It didn’t happen easily but it looks like it’s finally happened. I’ve mustered all the courage it takes to put myself out there. I have to thank Marisa and Micaela for giving me that last gentle prod. Thank you both.
Since this is the first post of this blog, I’ll do the ‘introduce yourself’ bit and tell you about who I am and what this blog is about.
I’ve been a teacher since 1997. My first teaching job was in a community school in London where I taught reception/year1 children. I continued teaching school children for a few years after that. We moved to Saudi Arabia in 2002 and I found what I thought was my niche when I got into the English as a Second Language IGCSE Cambridge examination. I had a great time teaching the loveliest and most motivated students I’ve ever met.
In 2008, the beginning of a new chapter in my teaching career was about to happen. I enrolled on the first CELTA course delivered in Jeddah (some say there may have been another one some years before that, but it’s unclear as to where and when). It was organised by Helen Glenn at the British Council’s Women Centre. Paula Ellis flew over to co-tutor the ten pioneering trainees. At the time, I don’t think I realised what an impact these four weeks were going to have on my life and my career as a teacher. On the last input session of the course, while most couldn’t wait to end it all, I received with great interest glad tidings of the next step – DELTA. It was then I decided that that was the path for me. I started working for the British Council, completed the DELTA as soon as I was able to, and am now studying with International House to improve my teacher training skills.
I’ve been delivering training sessions for a few years, mainly to do with teaching methodology and practice. A few years ago I developed a student peer-mentoring programme to support school teachers dealing with large classes in a leading local school – Global International School. This interest of mine led me to presenting the BC mentoring skills course to some local university faculty.
This year I saw an #ELTchat advert for an e-moderator. I decided to apply. I clearly remember thinking, ‘there’s a chance to get closer to those you’ve been learning so much from, afar, and perhaps also a chance to get more involved, share, grow, share some more, and grow some more!’
Saudi Arabia can feel like a lonely place when one reads about all the ELT activity happening elsewhere.
And they picked me.
So I started my teacher training course with IH at the same time as the assistant e-moderator post on #ELTchat. And my full-time job at the BC of course.
Now if there was a time in my life when I needed to reflect on what I do, then this is it.
Blogging now seems like the best way to reflect, share and learn from both the writing and the reading this will generate.