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 Maureen Clément at her language school in Beijing, China

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GS: So, can you tell us a bit about how you first got into English teaching?
MC: I started teaching in Taipei, Taiwan back in 2003. What an adventure! I had graduated from university and wanted to explore the world. Little did I know that teaching would begin the adventure of a lifetime. I started in your average “cram school” but over the years became very critical of the way businesses were run and how education was sacrificed for the almighty dollar. I decided to start my own school and it was a hit. Focusing on American literature and reading I helped savvy local parents give their children the education that was reserved for expat children. I consider myself a very progressive educator and am always on the lookout for pedagogical breakthroughs both theoretical and practical. That’s what attracted me to my school in Beijing.

GS: What advice do you have for people about the recruitment and interview process when looking for jobs teaching in China?
MC: Be honest about your limitations, examine what motivates you and don’t be afraid to try something new. Looking for work and teaching jobs in China can be time consuming, but don’t jump at the first offer. When meeting with a new employer, request some time with one of the teachers on staff. Prepare some questions and ask them about their experience at the school. If the school’s management refuses to let you talk with someone, they probably have something to hide, and that’s not a good sign. You want to make sure that the company you work for is transparent in their dealings and upfront with their staff. The best way to find out is to go to the source, one of their teachers.

GS: You are teaching in Beijing at the moment, can you tell us about your impressions of the city? What do you like most about living there?
MC: Beijing is a first tier city. It has a solid infrastructure and there are many cultural sites and great restaurants to enjoy.

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GS: What do you like most about teaching English?
MC: I like seeing the light go on in my students’ eyes. As a teacher, there’s no greater rush than watching a child or adult embark on a path of self-discovery through something you have just taught them. My forte is reading, so when I get a young child of four pronouncing and making meaningful connections between the sounds they produce and the pictures they see I know I’m doing things right.

GS: Can you tell us about your favorite class at the moment?
MC: Who would have thought that a nine month old could learn so much so quickly! Teaching moms and babies is such a wonderful classroom setting. The gurgling and “ooohs” and “aaahs”. Everybody gets excited about new songs, new activities and new readers. Infants absorb so much and supportive parents are guiding their children beyond the classroom. It’s great to be a part of such an early learning experience.Maureen pic 1- 350

GS: Talk us through a typical day teaching English in China.
MC: I’m at work from 9:30 to 6:30 Monday to Friday. I spend my hours developing new classes for three to six year olds, as well as preparing for weekend classes with mothers and babies. I work in collaboration with a team of highly experienced early childhood educators. Their support enriches the work I produce in so many ways. These kids are lucky!

GS: What are the teaching resources like there?
MC: The team I work with has been developing curriculum and working with babies and mothers for over 17 years. Dr. Feng who is at the head of the school worked in tandem with the University of Beijing for many years and the work I do is an extension of this. There are numerous books and people on hand to help with the curriculum development process. All of the classes are rehearsed and revised before implemented to ensure safety and quality instruction.

GS: How many teachers are there in your school?
MC: I work in a flagship school, the first luxury early childhood education center in China. At present, I am the only international teacher on staff but I work with eight other experienced local teachers with trained backgrounds in ECE, nursing and psychology.

GS: China is full of surprises and unexpected adventures, tell us about one you have had recently.
MC: The expats in Beijing are a wonderful and interesting group of folks. I recently attended an all Santa square dancing party in the Hutongs. Imagine a room full of Santa Clause’s dancing, singing and drinking beer- fun stuff!
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.