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Mixed bag of emotions: one downside of being a traveller

received_10153837839346759I have never really experienced the downside to travelling. I have been travelling for near two years. I’m not saying that it has always been all fun and games, but when things don’t quite go the way you planned, you just have to face the problem. Once the whole time I’ve been away have I felt homesick. I’m usually just as hard as a rock.

However, on Friday, I was completely overwhelmed by everything. To get the back story: I’ve been living in Sydney for nearly a year, and I have to leave here this week due to my visa conditions. No big deal. Well? I’ve just been feeling really weird: I know I don’t want to stay here, I know I have new and exciting opportunities coming up, but, somehow, I must have more of a connection to here than I thought.

My heart just feels like it’s dying. A piece of my heart will stay here. Maybe, it’s because I know I can’t stay here again. It is the other side of the world to my home country. I’m never going to live and experience Australia again.

It’s weird… when I first arrived I had a huge culture shock from living in Asia and didn’t even want to be here and now, I don’t feel ready to leave.

Friday was just the final straw of all my emotions piling up. Basically I told my jobs two weeks in advance that I would be leaving, which is pretty nice of me as I legally only had to give them one hour. Anyway, I found out in an unprofessional way, two minutes before my day class that it would be my last time teaching them. I just didn’t know what to say to them. I was in shock. To make things worst, I arrived at my evening school and the manager sat me down, and again told me the exact same thing.

Emotions were filling my eyes. I just couldn’t move or think.I wasn’t ready to be saying farewell. It really meant I was leaving Sydney. It actually started to kick in. I have so many questions in my head and no fixed feeling. I know my plans for the immediate future. Am I worried? Am I scared? Why have I done this to myself?

They never tell you in the book of travelling this hard part. I’ve known and experience other bad parts of travelling but never this feeling. I can’t even express into word. I kind of feel like a steam truck has flattened me, not able to breathe. Or everything around me, including the surroundings, my friends, jobs, people are just like bubbles that are bursting, disappearing from my sight slowly.

I keep telling myself ‘It’s not goodbye… It’s see you later’ even though it’s hard knowing there are friends I will unlikely see again.

Teaching ESL to adults in Sydney

img_20160804_120105Just under a year ago I moved to Sydney as a friend was living here. In no time I managed to get myself a job as a teacher, teaching English as a foreign language to Adults.

Looking back now, when I first started I was so lucky to find a job as I felt under-qualified and under-experienced. Even though at the time, I thought I was ready as I had been teaching at Primary Schools for 2 years in the UK and 6 months in Thailand.

However, this kind of teaching was totally different. I’m still not sure how I managed it because I absolutely hated being the centre of attention with group staring at me. I could manage a class of kids as I knew there was no judgement but adults was a completely different matter. They were paying hard money for me to teach them to expand their knowledge of English. How was I going to do this? I had never really learnt a language so I had no concept of the different tenses or grammar point. Vocabulary was easy enough but actual grammar and pronunciation was a no-go. Was this stupidity? English had always been the subject I had struggled with especially battling with dyslexia. This was not going to stop me. I have never let anything stop me from fulfilling my goals. With high determination and a solid focus, I am always up for a challenge.

A year on, I can see how much I have grown in confidence, where I don’t shy away from teaching adults and my brain is now just bursting with so much knowledge of English grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation. It’s a good job I love learning new things. Nearing my end of my time in Sydney, I have now work at three incredible English Language school, which have been pretty similar but at the same time, they are all unique.

I have loved working at these colleges, teaching just lovely students from all around the work and wonderful colleagues. I have taught General English from Elementary to Advanced level, day time and evening shift as well as a mix of both, sometimes, even working 14 hours, taking student on excursions, doing conversation clubs and even socialising with them. I am so thankful for everyone I have met through working in Sydney.

It has varied at the different schools. At my first school, initially, I taught two different levels during the day with grammar in the morning, and conversation and writing in the afternoon. Then changed to teaching the same level all day. The timetable was teaching five hours a day with a forty minute lunch from nine to three,  four day a week with a Friday being electives such as excursions, movie or grammar.

Generally the timetable was:

Monday AM – recap previous week’s grammar and go through test papers

PM – New vocabulary and reading

Tuesday AM – Grammar point 1

PM – Speaking activities using the grammar point

Wednesday AM – Grammar point 2

PM – Planning, speaking and writing practise

Thurday AM – Grammar and writing test

PM – Speaking activities or Australia studies

Evening class at both my first and second school have always consisted of teach two hours slots to the same level with a half an hour break with these classes being much more relaxed and not quite getting through as much.

Then at my third school during the day, I taught two hours from twenty past eight, two hour break then another two hours with an hours to do planning before leaving at half three. Again teaching a mix of writing, reading, pronunciation, speaking, grammar and vocabulary. In the two hours between the classes, there are ‘mystudy’ classes for the students, where I teach two to three times a week either implementing a conversation class or monitoring the computer room or doing a music lesson.

Teaching has given me so much joy and I am so thankful for the opportunity to teach ESL to adults in Australia. I have met so many wonderful students and teachers, and I am going to miss them. I have grown and learnt so much and experienced wonderful things while teaching.


Future Plans

picture-travelInitially I wasn’t planning on staying in Australia for this long. It just sort of happened. I had a friend in Sydney, who was leaving in February because of her visa. However, I decided to stay as I loved my job, made friends and settle in to a house pretty close to the centre. I was thinking about staying in Sydney for 6 months but now it will be a year.

My time here in Australia is coming to an end. Whizzing around my head is multiple thought, new plans and time to make a decision.

I haven’t got anything in stone yet but I will slowly reveal my next step on this on-going world adventure as a travelling teacher.

My thoughts is to stay in Sydney to work to save up some more bucks then travelling for 2 months: maybe New Zealand, more of Australia, visit the Great wall of China, South Korea and possibly other places. Then, and here goes… Return to my home town, England for Christmas. By this time, it would have been two years since living in the UK. As I ponder this, excitement grows inside me from the thought of seeing, spending time and hugging my family and friends. I may even be an auntie by then.

Peace out!

Sydney, Australia: first weekend in my new home

With a huge grin on my face and a welcome balloon waiting for me, I ran through the airport to greet a close friend from England.

I have arrived in Sydney; Australia. New Country, New Continent.

Life here will be very different to my time in Thailand but I’m still going to explore everything this beautiful place has to offer.

My first weekend here was full of touristing Sydney, catching up with my mate, getting used to a different way of live (but extremely similar to British life) and finding about all the useful things to know about this place.




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