Teaching English in China Part Two – The SARS Epidemic

Ask any ESL teacher that has taught abroad and they’ll tell you that their first few months, heck the first year, is rife with challenges. What happens, though, when the country that you’ve moved to suddenly experiences a health epidemic, like SARS or Avian flu, Here’s what happened to me during the 2003 SARS epidemic in Mainland China. Continue Reading →

Teaching English in China Part One – The Journey Begins

It’s a scary thing to pick up and move your life to the other side of the world. I got my first taste of that when I was 27 and on my way to Changchun, China on March 23rd, 2003. I was going to spend a year abroad teaching English in China.
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Teaching in China: 12 Tips for Your First Weeks Living Abroad

Thinking of teaching in China? The ESL industry in China is booming and the demand for qualified ESL teachers is going up every day. Here are 12 tips for your first few weeks teaching and living abroad in China. Continue Reading →

Free Lobotomy

  Ever been offered a free lobotomy?  I have.  Back in 2003, I was offered one on my first morning in Chángch?n, China.  I woke up to the sound and sight of a man standing at my window.  It sounded like he was saying, “Free Lobotomy? Freeeee Lobotomy!” I could not, for the life of me, figure out why he thought I wanted or needed one.  Perhaps I had that frazzled, newly arrived look that I later noticed on every newbie’s face Continue Reading →