I have been teaching english to kids 4-12 in China since the summer of 2017.

This is possible due to the magic that is the internet. I love it, and this summer I was contacted by a recruiter who was looking for ESL teachers to teach Italian high school students visiting New York.  Having zero in class experience, I was a bit (Ok VERY) nervous about this opportunity.  My students are normally literally across the world, in their homes on their webcams.  How am I going to teach students in a real classroom?? As anxious as I was, I said yes.

We were responsible for teaching our students about life in New York and American Culture. There was no set curriculum so while they gave us a rough guideline of topics to cover, we ultimately decided. I know I have much to improve but for my first time teaching with students that were not behind a screen, I think I did pretty well! One of ymy favorite days was when we were speaking about the crazy (to say the least) 2016 presidential debate. I showed them a short video of it, then we spoke about transitional words and phrases when we are debating or persuading. In order to think about the topic of debates on a more personal level, I had them choose debate topics, write their opinions down and debate in pairs in front of the class. They chose topics like gay rights, assisted suicide and abortion. It was so great to see them exercise the language to support their opinions, and see how strongly some youth feel over certain topics.

So, although you’ve never done something, take the chance. Tiptoe to the very edge and know that it’s not about the outcome. Jump, without looking back. Taking chances and trying something new will help you grow as a person. If you end up being horrible at that new thing, you can learn from it and hopefully do better next time. Or never, ever do it again. And if it ends up being great, then you may have found yourself a new passion. Congrats, Dianne.