Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Teaching in China

Janet and I have been offered a teaching position in Zhanjiang, China and are planning to accept! Zhanjiang is in the far south of China, about halfway between Hong Kong and the Vietnam Border. It is also very close to the Chinese resort island of Hainan, so we're already looking forward to a weekend vacation to the tropical beaches there.

The school we will be teaching at is a vocational based high school/community college. We will be responsible for teaching primarily English Conversation classes and then also some basic Business and Economic Principles courses. The students will range in age from about 16 to 18.

Janet and I will be the only foreign teachers at this school, but other volunteers from our program will be teaching at a different College in the city, about 10 minutes away. We will also each be given our own apartments on campus and a small salary from the school to cover additional expenses.

We will report into Hong Kong by August 26 for a program Orientation before heading to Zhanjiang to begin the school year in early September. The first semester will wrap up shortly before the Chinese New Year (usually between the middle of January to the middle of February) and we will have four weeks vacation for the New Year to travel. After we report back, the second semester will run until mid-July and after that, who knows?

For a map of China, click on the link below. Zhanjiang is in the far south, near the South China Sea. It is west of Hong Kong and somewhat near the border with Vietnam. If you spot Hainan island first, just look a little bit north. http://www.mybeijingchina.com/beijing-map/images/map_china.jpg

Flight Information

Just wanted to post my flight schedule so everyone would know my plans. I'll be flying at of Orlando (MCO) at 6:45AM on Friday, June 22.

Unfortunately, since this is an international flight, we'll have to be at the airport around 5:00AM, if not earlier! I should arrive in Newark at 9:23AM and will enjoy the New Jersey airport hospitality until we catch our flight for Beijing at 12:10PM.

The flight to Beijing will be just over 13 and a half hours and we will arrive on Saturday, June 23 at 1:45PM (local time). Beijing is 13 hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time, but in the summer, we will only be 12 hours ahead since there is no Daylight Savings Time in China.

After having flown just over 7,000 miles, our group leaders should be at the airport to pick us up and then we have a bus ride to Tianjin (about an hour to an hour and a half) before finally being able to settle into the dorm rooms at Tianjin Foreign Studies University.