What it is like for a first time teacher teaching at Twinkle?
Being a first time teacher at Twinkle can be describe in four adjectives: amazing, exciting, compelling, and rewarding.
Amazing: For me, the experience of teaching was and continues to be amazing. Working with high-level, extremely intelligent students, (or what I like to think of as 'little adults'), continues to fill me with awe even to this day. Every year, month, and week, I continue to be surprised by the depth of understanding that our students bring with them which we continue to build upon. Each student is like their own individual puzzle that grows before my eyes as I continue to help them add skills and knowledge. I am amazed at their growth - even from week to week and especially year to year; it is like nothing I have ever experienced.
Exciting: Each week is a new adventure, and a new story, that I excitedly lead my students through, and that we can experience together. Each class and each student are a bit different - it is almost magical how new methods of expressing the same lessons can arise if you allow yourself to be spontaneous and take chances. I come to each class with a pretty good plan of how I will deliver my lesson, but always leave room for improvisation because that is where the excitement lies. Along with with excitement, I also believe a key feature that new teachers will benefit from is enthusiasm. Enthusiasm is contagious in the classroom; our learners are just waiting for you to take them on an exciting three hour experience where they can have fun and learn.
Compelling: Teaching our students at Twinkle is not a dispassionate affair, it evokes interest, and causes you to behold in admiration the immense impact that you have on their lives. Learning and teaching in Seoul is a competitive endeavor. Moms are demanding and will expect a lot from the people in charge of teaching their children. Without proper time management, the work load and time spent on preparation and grading can seem daunting. At times, the responsibility can feel demanding, sometimes approaching onerous, but the difficulties, I feel, are attenuated by the rewards of the profession.
Rewarding: Above all else, teaching at Twinkle is rewarding. I feel that finding a profession that you personally feel is gratifying, is the one of the keys to happiness. For me, there is nothing like experiencing that magical instant, that "Ah Ha" moment, when a class full of student are on the same wavelength, and comprehend an aspect of a lesson together. The energy from an engaged class full of beaming students is palpable. On more than a handful of occasions I have gone into work feeling a bit under the weather, but as soon as I get into my lecture, and feel the gaze of my interested students, I feel right as rain. Seeing the growth of your students, and the amazing transformation that they undergo is incredibly worthwhile and rewarding.
- Miguel Teacher