I know I haven’t written on this blog for a while but the last few months have been a whirlwind of experiences. Teaching English, although tons of fun, sure keeps you on your toes! 🙂
Becoming a TEFL teacher seemed like a dream out of my reach. For the past three years I have been reading blogs and forums of people traveling the world and teaching English. I wanted to jump into every photo and experience everyone’s journeys for myself, but I never had the guts to actually do it.
Last year, AJ and I decided to get TEFL certified. (Thank goodness for a man that pushes me to follow my dreams 😉 ) We did an online course through Global Tefl language training and started searching for teaching jobs abroad. It took us about 4 months, lots of Skype interviews and prepping teaching demos, until we landed our jobs in Hong Kong. It was so surreal! We had our Skype interview in the morning and got job offers in the afternoon. This all happened in one day! A month later we were on our way to Hong Kong!
People questioned our career change. They asked us why we felt the need to teach abroad? “It’s not a solid career for you guys and you are both turning 30 this year! It might be time for you both to settle down?”. Those are the lines we kept hearing over and over from a lot of people. Everyone seemed very worried about our “BIG CHANGE”. But deep down we knew that we had to do this.
It might be difficult to understand why we decided to make this big change in our lives. Why now? Why do you want to become TEFL teachers? Why this career change? Why a different country? Our answer…..why not?
I guess it all started to make sense when we went backpacking this year. We spent quite a lot of time with local people and families. We saw how people in the local villages live and experienced glimpses of their daily lives. We learned that people are the same all over the world. Everyone is trying to survive the daily grind. One day, we got invited to our tour guide’s home. His daughter wanted to learn more English so we sat with her, for a bit, to teach her some new words. We also went into the highlands of Vietnam and handed out some candy to some kids.
We felt inspired to make a change in the world. English is something that comes to us naturally. I guess you can say that we are lucky in that sense. But for many others its a language that they need to learn and study. This is a language that can open up a path to new career opportunities. So we decided to do the things that we are most passionate about. Traveling and trying to change the world. 🙂
So here we are, in Hong Kong, teaching English to young students. For the first time in my life I am actually looking forward to going to work! It’s an amazing feeling when a little 3 year old comes up to you and says your name. Or when someone starts to sing the song, that you taught them, all on their own. These are the moments that make you feel like dancing! Finally the quote from Mahatma Gandhi makes so much sense:
“Be the change that you wish to see in the world.”
We know that we are making a difference in these students lives, but I wonder if they know that they are also making a difference in ours?