Finding my Teaching “Qi”, Reflection (GDPI 811)

I am a Canadian Teacher who spent 3 years teaching Year 3 at an international school in China, found a Chinese partner and now have a beautiful half asian son at my home in Toronto.

Soon, I’ll need to get back to business and find my teaching ‘Qi’ in Canada.  Qi is an asian word used in many different cultures with a meaning of the breath of vital energy within a living soul.  [More about qi on wikipedia here.] I see it like a balance. A balance between philosophy, method, curriculum, life, personal and professional relationships.  It took me a year to really find my personal balance at my teaching position in China, and I wonder about how long it will take to find my groove here, back home in Canada.

I purposely taught for three years at the same school in China to meet the basic minimum requirements for teaching experience at many international schools.  I was sad to leave.

An ideal school for me would:

  1. have strong roots in the PYP curriculum or be leading to that type of inquiry-based teaching
  2. be small and intimate
  3. have less stringent regulations about parent-teacher, and in some cases parent-student communication (group chats, possibly open blogs, a more caring and supportive environment, open email channels)
  4. be in Toronto’s city centre
  5. have strong leaders
  6. be extremely collaborative at the classroom level, to the point of shared folders on joint servers and mixed classrooms
  7. have a high ESL ratio, my experience teaching at schools with the majority of students with English as a second language leaves me eager to help immigrants and whomever else might need a kind helping hand in that area
  8. hire me (haha)

I would like to teach in the public school system, but right now, from the outside, and from my past experience, it seems restrictive and less intimate than I would be searching for.  It’s also downright daunting! How does one hack into a curriculum that was learned 10 years prior!



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