Gold Star TEFL Recruitment has been assisting teachers secure the very best teaching jobs in China since 2009 and has close connections with China’s leading schools. For details on teaching jobs with major language schools have a look through our website and submit an application today.
Read more interviews with teachers in China here.

An Interview with Mark Bline at an International School

Shenzhen, China

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GS: So, can you tell us a bit about how you first got into English teaching?
MB: I first started teaching about a year after my graduation from college. I had been to Beijing on a study tour and I knew I wanted to come back to China someday. It worked out and I’ve been here for about a year and a half. I have past experience working with kids so this was something I was confident doing for a job.

GS: What advice do you have for people about the recruitment and interview process when looking for jobs teaching in China?
MB: I work at a private school which can be very different than a public school. When I first came to China, I wasn’t really aware of the difference. Public schools might have more kids and shorter hours but private schools have smaller class sizes. Interviews can vary – mine was done over Skype when I was in America. I found my current job by talking to a friend who knew a teacher in China. The internet also has lots of job postings if you want to teach.

GS: You are teaching in Shenzhen at the moment, can you tell us about your impressions of the city? What do you like most about living there?
MB: Shenzhen is right across the border from Hong Kong in southern China. It’s a large city with lots of things to keep you busy. The city is generally clean with a good metro system and I consider it very safe. The best part of Shenzhen is its proximity to Hong Kong. I can go to Hong Kong every weekend if I want.

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GS: What do you like most about teaching English?
MB: The best part about teaching in China is seeing the progress in the kids from one year to the next. Since we are an immersion school, we get to see them go from non-English speakers to nearly fluent in a short amount of time. I enjoy working with small groups of children and the joy that they have every day. It can sometimes be difficult working with preschoolers and kindergartners but they are so much fun to be around with and they always surprise you.

GS: Can you tell us about your favourite class at the moment?Mark 2 350
MB: Since we are an immersion school, I teach every subject to the kids. I am with them almost the entire day. We have music classes throughout the week and I find them to be a lot of fun and helpful for the kids.

GS: Talk us through a typical day teaching English in China.
MB: I take the metro to my school and I get there around 8 am. Our classes start at 9 am so I need to be ready by then. We have a phonics class and a topical theme class in the morning, along with some free play. We have a break in the afternoon for lunch and the kids take a nap. In the afternoon, the kids and I have a music class and then we end the day with a Chinese class. I take the metro home at about 4:45 pm and I’m normally home by 5:30 pm.

GS: What are the teaching resources like there?
MB: Teaching resources are usually good. We have a good amount of books to use and other crayons, markers, construction paper, etc. We can laminate anything we need to and we can order other supplies if the need arises.

GS: How many teachers are there in your school?
MB: There are a total of 4 teachers in our school. We generally have small classes and a good close knit atmosphere. Two of us are from the US and one is from the UK.

GS: China is full of surprises and unexpected adventures, tell us about one you have had recently.
MB: I’ve always enjoyed China and traveling to Macau and Hong Kong has been very interesting and exciting. There are lots of things to do in the region. I have a bicycle and I ride it around frequently which helps me explore the city on my own. Some of my most memorable experiences are riding my bike through parks and small streets while exploring the city.
This school is holding interviews now, apply today!

Read more interviews with teachers in China here.

Gold Star TEFL Recruitment has been assisting teachers secure the very best teaching jobs in China since 2009 and has close connections with China’s leading schools. For details on teaching jobs with major language schools have a look through our website and submit an application today.
Apply now

INTESOL Course

Realise your dreams of living and teaching English worldwide with INTESOL.