Reading the i-to-i blog…

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Over the last few days, after writing “HiOffer – a new beginning?” I have found that I am truly missing out on the TEFL/ExPat lifestyle. So, to persuade my mind even more, I have been reading the i-to-i blog. It is full of testimonials, tips, hints and real life experiences of current or former i-to-i graduates. This also does not help that I was speaking with an British man, who had just returned from over years in the Philippines. He was passionate that I should go and live my dream (as he put it). ‘Go, teach in China’ – that is all he said as he left me thinking.

I have been focusing on the the internship posts – Internship in ChinaInternship in Thailand and Internship in Vietnam

There are many posts about the three internships; but this one struck me the most –  5 Reasons to go on the Vietnam Intership – I was surprised on what i-to-i classed as the five reasons to go. Being a bit of a culture junkie; I would have written about the culture and the food – however, I am always thinking of food. It is what gets me through the day.

Currently i-to-i are having a “Save 50% off Paid Internships” sale. Vietnam is £595 and both China and Thailand are £971.25 – however, this is only until 28th April.

It is a shame that I do not have the cash ready to pay for my spot…

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Learning the Lingo…

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I have been thinking about what I can do while I am on my TEFLing adventures. I have come to the conclusion that learning the lingo would help me the most in whatever Country I go to work in. If you are a regular reader of my blog, you will know that I am a user of Sign Language – currently fluent in British Sign Language and I am brushing up on my American Sign Language ready for my upcoming trip to the States.

I have been doing some research on the languages that are used in the three counties that i-to-i TEFL offer – Thailand, Vietnam and China. Sadly the Vietnamese and Chinese internships both start on the same day (20th August 2016) and I am unable to go, as I will have only just returned from America. The Thai internship does not start until October (I still don’t know the actual date; as it is not on the website yet!) and the May internship is still being advertised. I wonder if there has not been enough interest in the internship. I want to get all my finances in order; if it means I have to do some extra work either online or with my “real life” jobs, I will do it!

logoI have been looking at learning Thai when I am on the internship; we are going to be given some Thai Language lessons that GES will provide me with some basic and fun Thai Language training to help you with your day-to-day life in Thailand. However, I want to learn Thai Sign Language (TSL). I know that I would have to have the basic understanding of the “spoken” language before I could fully understand the Signed Language. I wonder if GES could point me in the direction of being able to learn TSL when I am out there. mtsl2balphabet2bthai2bsign2blanguage

I have a very basic knowledge of Nepalese Sign Language (NSL) and I would if I will be able to pick up TSL as quickly as I did NSL. It has been a few years since I did any NSL; as I was at University.

Has anyone else learnt the lingo of the country that they are working in? Would you recommend that I do learn the language?

I’ve finally extended….

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I have finally got round to extending my TEFL course (once again!) I was halfway through the Advanced Grammar course and I had just received my Checkpoint feedback from the tutor. I cannot wait to get back into the swing of things.

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As for my Internship/Job hunting; I have been looking in Europe and focussing on Thailand as my Internship choice. Sadly, both the China and Vietnam Internships both start on the same day – 20th August 2016. This is the day after I return from my trip to America and I would have to leave on the 19th to arrive in China/Vietnam on the 20th. I do not think that I would be able to get all that I needed for six months (or thereabouts), leave the airport and return within three or fours hours. So, fate has given me only one choice – Thailand. I am excited about this and I am just waiting for the closing date to arrive for the May intake to come and then I will start applying! I need this in my life. At my current job; I do not know where I am going to be based in when September arrives. The worst case scenario will be one Signer and one Teaching Assistant (TAs). There are six TAs and about 15 Signers; where will our jobs be? I think that it is time that I stop thinking of others and get myself happy. I am never going to achieve anything unless I push myself.

MASSIVE update…

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I cannot believe that I have posted anything since August 13th. I feel so bad! So many things have happened and changed! Since my situation had changed, I have attended a local Girl Guide camp and fell for Teaching in Malaysia.

Anyway; back to my MASSIVE update! Since all the problems with my current job (yes I am still working in a school), I am still planning on going abroad September/October 2016. I have AirMiles (okay, okay they are called Avios now!) that I can use! I have signed to collect more by doing surveys for Avios. It only takes up a little bit of time each day! I am aiming for the Thailand Internship. I feel that I will enjoy it better than China; I can always head over to China after the five months?!

However; I have decided to go and visit my “family” in America for a few weeks – I know that I will use some of my points but as it is getting closer to Christmas (I cannot believe that I just said the C-word!!) I am hoping the “Santa and family” will give my US Dollars or even buy my some Avios. I have volunteered myself for a camp while I am in the USA. It will be good to see the camp from the “working” side as the last two times I have attended the camp I was a participant. I am REALLY looking forward to seeing them all again! I am excited about using my American Sign Language at the SIGNS restaurant in Canada.

As well as my job stressing me out; I have been trying to keep myself relaxed by crafting a lot more. Handmade Crafts & Cards has been doing better than I expected. At work; I have been working with one of my students who is originally from Albania, who happens to be Deaf. In theory, she is Tri-lingual! British Sign Language, Albanian and English. Her English is the thing that is suffering as she does not use it enough. I have been using the English Banana Elementary course; which I love! However; last week I was pulled off timetable to support another student and now she is suffering. I am still giving her homework though; I just hope that all is okay with her.

I am currently undertaking the Advanced Grammar TEFL Certificate; the last module I can do with I-to-I TEFL. I have also been listening to The Budget Minded Traveler; Jackie is an amazing blogger and she also does a Podcast. I have been listening to it during my commute to work. I am a little behind as Jackie has been producing the Podcast since 2014. I am loving her tips and hints and I have been inspired to save my pennies much more than I am!

I have written my reviews of my Teaching in Italy and Teaching in Vietnam modules. I will be posting them soon.

How exciting?!

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On Friday morning I had a chat with Monica of New Life ESL. It was lovely to finally get together and meet face to face. I am glad that I finally sent off my CV to Monica and her company. I have been following them on Instagram for a few months and there have been adverts for positions all over China. However, some of the positions wanted either experience or to be a certain age. So, I never applied. Until Claire and Anthony said on a comment about the company; I thought what the heck – and I sent them off a copy of my CV.

During the chat, Monica mentioned about a place that her friend was in a particular school that I would like too and with in minutes of receiving an email from Monica saying she has sent my details over to this partner school I had an another email. It was from Charlotte from Beanstalk International Bilingual School (BIBS) – an interview was booked for today at 8am GMT/3pm CST. However, there were connection issues and it has been moved to tomorrow at the same time. I have looked round the website. It looks amazing!! I have even checked the island (yes, the school is on an island!) out in my Lonely Planet travel guide. I am pretty excited. Smiles here at the moment.

Visa Applications…

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I have been contacted by Monica from New Life ESL; as I stated in my last post and I have been researching how much the Visa procedure and about the price for the Medical exam from the Doctors. I really need to find a time where Monica and I can talk. I have also been contacted by Derrick; another member of the New Life ESL team and I have let him know about being contacted by Monica.

I have been thinking about Visas a lot since my second interview with Star Teachers and I was shocked about the price for the Visa. I looked on many websites where I can apply for the Visa. The sites were:

  • Chinese Visa Direct; they multi entry (which is what I will possible need; as I want to pop over to Hong Kong) price is £255.
  • The Chinese Embassy here in the UK; their price is £180. The actual service is with Visa For China; but the website did not load properly. I will keep trying to see how that goes.
  • Visa For China.org.uk state that there multi entry visa is £308. However, that is for the Express Visa Fee. The Regular price is £171.
  • There is another site called Visa HQ which I also looked at and their visa price is £131.19 however; that is only for a single entry and is for 90 days.

I do not know which one to choose; I prefer to choose the cheapest one – will it be the right choice though? I am wondering if i-to-i TEFL would know who I could choose. Or who they would recommend?

Are they anyone who has or is dealing with any of the Visa Application Centres? which one do you think I can use?

Didn’t get it, but there is a sliver lining…

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On Wednesday morning via Skype I received confirmation that I didn’t get the position with the recruiter. I was not told why; I was wonder if they had read the post I wrote after the interview. However; there is a other position they think will be good for me. I need to think about it as I don’t know if I want to apply or not as it is just one interview with a person from HR. If it I’d like the first interview, I was not looking forward it! I However; I had the interview on Thursday morning. It was not as bad as I thought it would be. Very relaxed and the conversation flowed better than my first (first!) interview. The position is for a Public School placement in a District of Beijing. I am going to see how much everything; as in Medical Report and Visas are before I decide.

The sliver lining is that after Claire and Anthony’s reply to “Interviewing for China” I headed over to New Life ESL and had a look around to see if its for me. I decided to send them my CV and they contracted me on Friday morning saying to give them call. It will be an early morning call; well it will be for me as Monica is only available at 8.30-10.30 CST – it will be 1am-3am for me. I am excited! I have contacted Monica stating that I am trying to find the time to contact her. I just hope that all will be okay!?