Hi! We’re Claire and Anthony – a British couple who left our full-time jobs as Physics teachers to travel the world and get some experience teaching in some very different environments. You can read more about us on our “About Us” page.
Why work with us?
If you have clicked on this page then you are hopefully looking to collaborate with a pair of travel bloggers. However, you’re probably wondering what sets us aside from everyone else?
- We are passionate about the power of education to change lives. We are also confident that one person really can make a difference and we’re not afraid of hard work.
- We are UK qualified teachers who have both held positions in leadership and management roles within UK schools. Furthermore, we have recently qualified as TEFL teachers with i-to-i TEFL and have experience teaching a range of subjects including Science, Maths and ESL. We are aware that many of the projects out there do not require such qualifications but in our experience it can really make a difference to have someone who has been trained working as part of the team.
- We have experience in training teachers of different nationalities to deliver effective and engaging lessons. Once again this can be really useful if you have individuals who have little/no experience in teaching, especially on their own. We can provide teaching resources at request to suit a range of courses and abilities.
- We have experience in blogging, vlogging and promoting (via social media) other internationally operating organisations. It’s true that many large organisations already have a large number of followers but potential volunteers/interns want to hear what it is like for those who have experienced the opportunity first-hand.
Collaborations to date
We’ve been fortunate to work with several organisations that operate internationally. We also have a further two organisations that we are super excited about working with over the next 12 months. Here’s a breakdown of who we’ve been working with and what we’ve been able to provide for them:
We spent a long time looking for a company with which to complete a TEFL internship. You can read more about this decision and why we finally chose i-to-i TEFL on our “TEFL: a new beginning” blog post. Early on we were contacted by their marketing assistant and asked if we would document our entire experience. We were nervous about filming ourselves and whether anyone would be interested in anything we had to say. However, we were aware that this was an area of importance as we scoured the internet looking for any examples of written or video blogs to tell us what it would be like out in China on an i-to-i TEFL internship with in-country providers ImmerQi: we couldn’t find all that much! Elle, their marketing assistant sent us a camera, we discussed the videos required and we got set to making them. We filmed footage everywhere we went, wincing at our voices as we heard them for the first time! Elle also wrote a piece about us on her website which really helped those reading our blogs and watching the footage to learn more about us. The views started to increase and we began to get a slow but constant stream of individuals who were considering signing up or had already signed up. Some of the blogs written/videos made are in direct response to their questions, however, many just wanted an email back to answer their questions before taking that huge leap into the unknown.
What have we provided for i-to-i TEFL to date?
- A series of videos that charted our progress on the China internship:
- About us
- Pre-departure preparation including what to pack
- Arrival in Beijing
- Time at the training centre in Beijing including: cultural lessons; TEFL practical training; exploring Beijing; meeting the other interns; and finding out our placements
- Arriving to our placement school
- Our apartment
- Our school including: day one and our daily commute. More videos on life at our school and our local area are due to go live over the rest of May 2015.
- A series of blogs that both add to the videos made as well as act as standalone posts often in response to the questions of potential applicants.
- Social media advertising – we will retweet and favourite many of the posts put out by i-to-i to support them in reaching a wider audience. We also regularly partake in a variety of travel chats which we try to get their name mentioned as often as the topic is relevant to do so. We capture our experiences on Instagram and where appropriate hashtag them to showcase what can be done on their internship programmes.
What did we ask for in return?
Nothing! That’s right, we did it because we believed in the importance of the project to encourage more native speakers to go over to countries where English teaching was required. We strongly believe that the ability to speak English is an essential skill in the global market and the international community that we are all part of. It empowers young people to make the differences that the future requires.
However, we have been so fortunate to receive a GoPro camera with 16GB memory card from i-to-i TEFL. As a thank you for all our hard work we also received two nights stay in Hangzhou in early May 2015 – we’ve still made them a film about it to advertise to potential interns that there is so much they can affordably do on their weekends off. One of the benefits of moving to a new country is the ability to travel after all. We’d like to take this opportunity to thank i-to-i for all their support.
To find out more about i-to-i TEFL then head over to their website.
ImmerQi were the in-country providers in China that worked alongside i-to-i TEFL. As we began to support i-to-i we were equally supporting ImmerQi who were favouriting and retweeting a lot of the material that we were putting out on twitter. We therefore equally included them in a lot of our posts, our tweets and our mentions on travel chats. We hashtagged them in Instagram posts and recommended them when asked by potential interns. We spoke with the ImmerQi staff and continued to film the aspects of life in Beijing to further promote their brand. Many of the videos provided to i-to-i where in direct response to conversations we had with ImmerQi staff.
What have we provided for ImmerQi to date?
- Videos showing our time at the training centre in Beijing including: cultural lessons; TEFL practical training; exploring Beijing; meeting the other interns; and finding out our placements.
- Social media advertising – we will retweet and favourite many of the posts put out by ImmerQi to support them in reaching a wider audience. We also regularly partake in a variety of travel chats which we try to get their name mentioned as often as the topic is relevant to do so. We capture our experiences on Instagram and where appropriate hashtag them to showcase what can be done on their internship programmes.
What did we ask for in return?
Again nothing! For the same reasons as with i-to-i above we really believe in educating the world’s children to speak English so that they can access an international community and global market. Once again we were extremely lucky to be provided with the technology required (a free ethernet to USB connector) to access the internet at the training centre so we could continue our work. We’d like to take this opportunity to thank ImmerQi for supporting us at all times to continue to show potential interns the benefits of coming over to China.
To find out more about programmes offered by ImmerQi you can check out their website.
EduChina are a company that run a number of schools and international divisions across mainland China. They also run camps in both the UK and America to prepare their students for study abroad. We were fortunate to meet Shi Bo, the Vice Director of EduChina International (and Director of Academic Administration Department) when she visited our International Division. She was extremely impressed with some of the techniques we had integrated from our previous experience as teachers into our ESL lessons. She requested a demo-lesson to be carried out which was watched by all teachers (both Chinese and foreign) followed by a deconstruction of the lesson, elaborating on the techniques that had been incorporated. Resources were made at her request and emailed across. Additionally the lesson was videoed and this was sent out to all centres across China for teachers to watch and discuss.
There are arrangements in place for this collaboration to continue as we make resources for EduChina and travel out to centres providing support on teaching techniques through the use of workshops tailored to the needs of the teachers. We have been asked to stay on and work for EduChina and although we have prior commitments for the upcoming academic year they have said they will keep this opportunity open should be wish to pursue it in the future.
New and upcoming collaborations:
We are excited to have made some provisional plans to work with two new organisations as we travel around the world volunteering as teachers in some of the more disadvantaged communities.
Still want to work with us?
If you are interested in working with us then please fill out the contact form below outlining how we can help you and we’ll be in touch.