Hear from Our Teacher in Shanghai – Eston

July 06, 2016 | Teach English Abroad
Before Coming to China
Why did you want to teach in China?

I needed a break from South Africa, and I had done business with the Chinese before, so coming up here was a great opportunity to meet the people I had done business with, learn the language and also experience a new culture.

How was your experience finding a job through On the Mark Education?

Honestly. On the Mark was the best I’ve worked with, they were quick, the support was ample and they followed up excellently. I’ve tried other agencies but none come close to On the Mark, the level of professionalism was great and I would work with them in a hart-beat for my next trip.

How long did your Visa process take? How was the communication with the school during the Visa process?

My visa process including medical, shipping documents to the school and receiving my documents to apply for and get the visa was 1 and a half months due to it being a work visa, and the communication from the school was great, I was given the feedback I requested and given regular info on the proceedings of the documents.

What website did you use to book your ticket to China

I’m from South Africa so the cheapest guys were student flight for bookings and I flew Emirates.

Teaching Life in China
What was your first impression of China when you arrived?

I was amazed because it was so different from home and I was looking forward to the next day so I could explore.

What’s your schedule like?

It’s very relaxing, I personally have 6 classes a week, each class 40 mins, a ten min break and 40 mins again, work starts at 4pm to 9pm, and to travel late is really safe, most of the schools are really close to the metro.

What do you do during a typical work day? What do you usually do on your days off?

During a work day I’d wake up at any time, freshen up, get something to eat relax a bit more and make my way to work around 3 because the schools are close, I’d get to work, clock in and write a lesson plan, relax till 17:10 then do my lesson, then after the lesson, do communication books if I don’t have another lesson, if I do, I’d just do another lesson plan and then start my lesson (during the weekday you do max two lessons a day and 3 on weekends) and then wait to go home. When I’m off, I either just relax or go out, meet new people and explore Shanghai.

What is something exciting you have done around your city?

I visited Peoples Square and taken a ride on the train that goes through the town, and I’ve visited the Bund at night, great view.

What gave you the biggest culture shock about China or in your city?

Nothing really, I guess it was just the food that the locals eat, the stories you hear about the food the Chinese eat are true, but there are a lot of western food so you have other options. Lastly, it has to be the fact that people drive scooters on the pavement, it was more funny than shocking.

What do you like most about working for your school?

It has to be the kids, they’ve been great, they always smiling and so happy to see me, also the foreign teachers from other countries have been great.

What three things would you want to have known before you arrived?

Bringing your own medication because of the pollution, to get a VPN before you arrive in China, and tyo have been told that you can buy a IP card to call home.

How many percent of salary do you get to save very month?

Well after the 1st two months, you could save as much as 50 to 60% of your salary a month depending on your spending habits, because there is a lot to buy here in China and things are cheap.


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