Messages by Danilo

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General » Guelph TESOL class
Hi everyone,
I am writing from the city of Mianyang in Sichuan Province, PRC. I am currently employed by a crappy company called MARS since September. If you hear of this company somewhere, please don't even think of contacting them. I will give the details of all the evils this employer did to us teachers to those who are interested. Also, here's a school I want you to avoid: Dongchen International School of Mianyang. If you get an offer and are told you will be working here...please pass. You will be dealing with a crazy woman who will scream at you on the phone. The classes you will be given are called Sino-US class 1, 2 & 3. These are the students who are going to the US not because they are smart but because they want to avoid the very very tough university entrance exam here in China which I'm sure they won't pass. They are children of very rich Chinese and are given the privilege of bringing in ther laptops into the classroom. You will be lucky if you have an audience when you teach because some of them are playing computer games, others listening to music and others are texting with their cellphones. Senior 2 already failed TOEFL once and I believe that with study (or actually 'No Study) habits they show, they will keep taking and failing TOEFL until they are in their mid-40's.
General » Guelph TESOL class
Hi Jed and other graduates

If you want to try teaching in China, here's a good employer. Try to contact her.

I am travelling with a group of Chinese students on tour which I call 'O Canada Cultural and Educational Tour 2012' during the second half of July and would like to meet Global TESOL graduates who plan to work in China. Depending on your preference, Faye's Schools are mostly in northeast China.

I decided to help her because she had been asking me to come to one of her schools yet up to now I am still stuck in Sichuan Province. I will work for her starting September. She forwarded to me 3 school profiles today...3 postings although 1 is solely for female teachers only.

Faye Lieu
Maple Professional Resources Exchange Inc.
www.mpre.ca
Cell: 15054286137
SKype: faye420

General » Guelph TESOL class
Hi Jed and other graduates

If you want to try teaching in China, here's a good employer. Try to contact her.

I am travelling with a group of Chinese students on tour which I call 'O Canada Cultural and Educational Tour 2012' during the second half of July and would like to meet Global TESOL graduates who plan to work in China. Depending on your preference, Faye's Schools are mostly in northeast China.

I decided to help her because she had been asking me to come to one of her schools yet up to now I am still stuck in Sichuan Province. I will work for her starting September. She forwarded to me 3 school profiles today...3 postings although 1 is solely for female teachers only.

Faye Lieu
Maple Professional Resources Exchange Inc.
www.mpre.ca
Cell: 15054286137
SKype: faye420

General » Is there anywhere you can teach with out a degree, and make just a small amount of money? (I have taught drums for a 2 years also..?)
To make sure you can save, don't aim for the large metropolitan cities. I accepted an assignment at a government-run middle school for just 60 RMB per hour. But since I was provided with an apartment all inclusive, I am able to save a big chunk of my paycheque. It also depends on your lifestyle. I sleep when it's time to sleep...I don't do pub crawls. The best part of your stay here is when you are requested to teach part-time by some private 'English language schools'. Presently, I have 22 day classes (40 minutes per class) Monday to Friday but on the side I get 18 classes per week on the side (1 hour per class) evenings and weekends. For the month of March I got 14,000RMB. My monthly budget (food, etc) could only run up to 3,000 RMB. Some school even provide free lunch and even dinner sometimes.
General » Beware of China
Nikolas, you are right: Educate yourself prior to departure! Those first two comments obviously are from those who did not perform this essential. It is always part of good preparation; Educate Yourself. Also, trim down your attitude of superiority. China is aware that they are needy when it comes to learning the English language. They need you to help them so make sure your reason for coming to China is to teach English. If you come to China to milk their educational system or to be bosses instead of subordinates, you'll be disappointed and leave with a lot of regrets and anger. If you come to China for the right reasons, you will be content and happy. Of course there are a few bumps on the road and sometimes you have to make some little sacrifices...that's part of life...that's part of being a good teacher.
General » Advice Please: Chinese Essentials and Gift Risks
Hi Niko,
I am not sure how far you are from major metropolis like Beijing perhaps. But I agree with you "some" North American stuff could be tough to find. Regarding deodorants; stick type ones are not on sale here. I am desperate for my Old Spice stick and I can't find it even in Hong Kong. They have a few of those disgustingly sticky roll-on brands like Rexona and also some spray like AXE, Adidas (I threw it after one use coz my skin got swollen and felt like it was blistering), etc. As for gifts, anything not "Made in China" would be appreciated. The kids would love those little buttons with Canadian or American flags in them. If you are from Canada, you can request for a few (maybe 30 pieces) of those from your local MP. Also, my students when nuts when they saw my left-over Canadian coins. Even dimes can go a long way... If you have some National Geographic or Canadian Geographic magazines, please carry some. I know they're heavy but they are favourites for your students to browse and even be part of your "get-to-know" first sessions.












General » Life in Shanghai
Hi Dave,

I would like to know if you are interested in working here. We have an urgent need for one more ESL teacher and for some reason, the task to find that teacher falls on me and I can think of anybody else. It is really urgent...as in ASAP...or hurry up if you're interested. Please send me an email at dovilleis@yahoo.ca for more details. Here, it's a smaller city (relatively speaking) and pollution is minimal PLUS apartment is provided..a nice one. Please think about it.
General » Life in Shanghai
Hi Dave,
I really do apologize a million times for not sending you a quick reply. I remember you were on your way to China in late spring and inquired about similar things...what happened? You did not get the job? Where are you now then? The answers to your questions depend on so many factors. Learning Mandarin may be easy for some but challenging to others. Local co-teachers from my school is trying to persuade me to study Mandarin but I think I am one of those hopeless ones. Chinese words are usually heavily accented and if accented incorrectly, it could mean something else. My attempts have brought my class into hysterical laughter. Also culture shock could depend from individual to individual. I lived, worked, and studied with a lot of Chinese people in Canada so culture change is maybe only half-shocking for me. Regarding the "visa situation" I have not heard of any difficulty worth noting. I also don't have any idea about the military or police asking for your passport when you board the train.
General » Life in Shanghai
Hi Aruna,
So you have chosen China. There are a lot to consider before you make the decision because employment here differs from place to place, school to school, etc. Schools that are close to large cities (Beijing, Shanghai) usually pay higher than those in smaller cities but if the city is highly industrialized then pollution comes with it. Also most larger city employer will not provide accommodation but will help with your rent. It is up to you to look for a place to stay and you are expected to pay 3 months in advance. Also chances are, you may need to commute from your apartment to the school and that could cost you. Consider the topography as well coz weatherwise, if you get an offer close to Siberia, weather could be severe.

I am working in Western Sichuan province which could be humid in the summer but winters can get no lower than 3 degrees. The city is not very large although as expected, all Chinese cities are heavily populated. The city is less industrialized so pollution is insignificant. Accommodation is provided and I live inside the school campus...at the "teachers' apartments" which is a plus. During school days, our food is provided for free at the school restaurant...and my, can they cook! My salary is not as high as those in large cities but it's pretty decent. English teachers here are in demand (coz there's not many of us here) so when locals learn of your presence, they will seek you and arrange for some private tutoring and a know-how on teaching IELTS/TOEFL Preparation could be your "pot of gold" or as our school director calls, a "cash cow". Right now, a university is waiting for my commitment to teach IELTS preparation to its students.
General » Eureka! I'm in China
After struggling with an unrewarding customer service job I decided to take the 120-hour certification course under Jim Pellegrini in Toronto. I got certified in May and after posting a few resumes for Chile, Poland, Czech Republic, Japan & Taiwan I got a few offeres with ridiculous requirements. One sent me an offer with a litany of requirements half a meter long on my yahoo mail. I was ready to give up when I decided to turn to Jim (again). I asked him on a Wednesday afternoon a request to send my resume to prospective employers promising him "I'll go where you want me to go...". I checked my email the next morning and there was this message from China; "application accepted" with attached contract. It was quite a shock and unbelievable that my knees started to tremble. I called my friends for second opinions and all of them were supportive of the idea that I should take it. After a few more hours of hesitation, I signed the contract and sent it back.

To make the story short (it is already long, actually) I am now in Mianyang City, Sichuan Province waiting for classes to start. In the meantime I am teaching a TOEFL Preparation class everyday even though I am still trying to get off this jet lag. I will be teaching at Mianyang Nanshan Bilingual School, the most prestigious school in its category for Sichuan Province. My employer said I will be assigned to teach high school students.

I have observed in my TOEFL class that Chinese students are well grounded on proper grammar. Their main focus is speaking the language.

I remembered Jim told us that in China, students will treat their ESL teachers like gods. At this point I have not had that experience yet but I am already treated like a celebrity and/or royal; like a student showing me off to friends...everyday I get after class.

Mianyang City is just ideal for me. Their lowest in the Winter is 3 degress and pollution is minimal due to relatively lower industrialization. Standard of living here is low and I won't trade living here to that of a big city where living expenses is sky high even if I got 2x the salary.