By: Jirawadt Siri-Aree
When I was in a college, I had never thought to be a teacher at all. My dream was to be a great engineer. It was my only dream since I was in grade 5, right after my wish to be Miss Universe.(Really!) But as time went by, things had changed. I have seen the world (Well, I still want to see more.). I have learned about people.
I have seen how education played an important part of my life and others’ lives. I have finally figured out that I want to be a teacher, to be a simple but important part of those lives in this moving globe. Sir Isaac Newton may have introduced the key to the world. Albert Einstein may have given us the key to the universe. But I want to be the one who brings up the students to become these two geniuses. What a big dream I have!
When I was a student in a primary school, I loved playing teacher-student with my younger brother and my friends in the neighborhood. My family ran a small grocery shop. So we had lots of boxes of goods in the shop. There were many times I had those boxes as students, too. Though I enjoyed playing a teacher when I was young, I had never dreamed to become one. Because I thought being a teacher was to be yelling and punishing students and all the students were to listen to what she said and to do whatever she told them to. By the way, now I know I was wrong. I also understand more about being a teacher which is not an easy job.
Teachers need to be extremely patient to be able to handle all kinds of students. So I would not blame those teachers who so many times had lost their nerves and let everything out on their students. Moreover, I am actually grateful for everything I have learned from all my teachers. Now I know exactly what kind of a teacher I want to be. I used to be a student myself so I had fantasized about my dream teacher. And now I am trying hard to become one.
I first started teaching because I was asked to teach English to kids in my neighborhood. At that time, I was taking a break from my engineering job. I hesitated a bit about accepting the teaching job, but I had decided to give it a try. It was really hard in the beginning to deal with the kids with various characteristics one can imagine: naughty, noisy, lazy, shy, angry, hungry, hyperactive, etc. I had been trying so hard not to lose my nerve. After some time, I received some feedback from the parents that I had made some positive changes in their kids. That feedback had changed my life. I remembered how overwhelmed I was when my students enjoyed learning in my class, when they could perform outstanding tasks in English, when they could go to the school of their choice, and when they won national competitions. Those feelings had driven me and changed the way I thought about being a teacher.
I taught those kids how to speak English. But they taught me how to love them. They taught me how I need to be calm and think before I speak; how I need to find the good in the bad; and how to respect in order to be respected. And with love and respect, our classes were happier and more effective.
I teach English because it is what I can do best. I love English because it was the key to many of the greatest experiences I have ever had. I was an exchange student in Brazil. I was a school representative to be a candidate for international scout camp. I was an intern in Finland.
I had many opportunities to use my English to earn money. It was because of English that I could continue my Master of Science in Germany. I have used English to explore Europe and meet new people. And teaching English has become my destiny. What is best in being a teacher is to be an inspiration to the students.
My experiences have inspired my students and they inspire me for more discoveries so that I have more stories to tell. My stories are running out of stock. So I think it is time for me to write more chapters in my book of life. I am eager to know about students in other parts of the world. I wonder if I can be their inspirations. Besides, I already have stories from my side to tell them. Moreover, I believe my magic man is out there. So whoever is reading this, please keep your fingers crossed for this 34-year-old single.
In order to do that, I need the ticket to the world. International TEFL Academy is the first I have found, after having learned about it, I know exactly that this is what I am looking for. I have been taking an online TEFL course for 3 weeks. I am really enjoying and learning a lot from this great course. I was first impressed by the ITA staff. I have met great classmates. My professor has answered all my questions.
I am really grateful I have found the ITA course. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. I hope that as an ESL teacher, I can bring the world closer to all my students. Just wait and see.
Jirawadt Siri-Aree is a 34 year old Thai native currently living and working in her hometown of Phetchabun, Thailand. She is working part-time as an English tutor at a local school and also as a private tutor. She has been teaching kids from grade 1 to grade 12 for 5 years.