Teaching Abroad Essay Sample
The current changes and advancement in technology, international interdependence and increasing ties between countries has made the world a global village, this has opened up new opportunities and expanded others to many individuals in the international arena among them being professional educators. Fisher, C. (2009) is of the opinion that the faculty has not been left out of this revolution as in many cases individuals have landed opportunities to work and live abroad and in foreign countries as the faculty, teaching training or caring out research work among others. This has been as a result of the growing number of students, opening up of more international schools and a subsequent upsurge in learner enrollments in these schools. Consequently the demand for teachers and educational administrators in all subject areas leading to an expansion in grade levels in these exciting international schools. As a result, this has become a good learning opportunity for the faculty to learn a couple of things while working abroad as it regards teaching. Despite the existence of good opportunities, the faculty has no doubt been met with enormous challenges in these new environments which in most cases turn out to be learning opportunities for them. There are various things that the faculty learn about teaching while working abroad as teachers basically as a result of the diverse cultures and changed environment that presents itself to the faculty who teaches outside their countries of origin. In essence, teaching abroad entails a number of changes, transformations and sometimes challenges to the faculty ranging from cultural, moral and social as a result of the different beliefs existing and experienced abroad. This presents itself as a challenge to most of these individuals especially when the social strata of the newly established society abroad does not conform completely with the faculty’s native beliefs and traditions. This calls for a change in terms of ones way of thinking and behavior wise to enable them co-exist with the newly established livelihood in foreign countries however different that may be from their original way of life, cultural beliefs and teachings.
To start with, Brad Burn, R. (2004) asserts that a teacher who has the opportunity to teach abroad is able to understand aspects regarding curriculum development and the special role that plays towards the success of the learner. In many cases, these teachers travel abroad to teach in modern and resource rich academies and international schools that provide learner centered curriculums to their students. This provides a good base to the learners facilitating their venture in to successful careers after school that suites their abilities, knowledge and desires. The teachers therefore learn more about the crucial role played by the curriculum in a learner’s life both in school and outside school hence their ability to venture in to successful careers after school. The faculty therefore learns to put curriculum development at the top of their priorities in their teaching endeavors since they understand the importance of this to their career as well as the learners successful ushering of a career of choice which is well supported by the curriculum. This forms the teacher’s successful career that effectively understands the learner’s needs and goes ahead to satisfy them according to the demands of the market. In many cases, teaching fails because of the lack of a clear guideline to the teachers and learners on what should be taught during a particular age and time in a learner’s life; this is provided for by the curriculum hence the crucial role played by the curriculum. This way, the faculty learns more about the importance of a good curriculum in the whole education and teaching process, this ensures that they come up with effective strategies that enhance their productivity.
At the same time, Oludolapo, F. (2007), says that the ability of a faculty to teach abroad makes them learn that teaching is a multiculturally acceptable, universally accepted and a beneficial career that has the ability to impact on people’s life’s anywhere. The ability of the faculty to secure these opportunities abroad broadens their thinking about teaching, the subject matter and understanding. Consequently, they are able to view teaching as a career of choice that can just like any other career propel an individual to a successful life. Through ones ability to interact with people from all walks of life as they teach, one understands and appreciates different cultures having a diversified mind and general outlook. At the same time, the ability of the career to open up better opportunities abroad is itself self fulfilling, this acts as a motivation to the teacher and others who associate it with desperation and poor pay. In many cases, teaching has been considered as a lowly paid career, one that is meant for desperate people. However, the ability of these individuals to secure well paid job opportunities gives the career a turn around image. This makes it enjoyable and attracts more individuals in to the career acting as a motivation to those already in the career and a dream career for those yet to join. Teaching plays a central role to any society’s development and therefore it should be given the respect that it deserves so that at no one time will the society lack sufficient teachers.
In addition, while teaching abroad, the faculty realizes that teaching requires the use of various teaching strategies that will seek to enhance learner understanding and knowledge. Teaching is a practice that involves the application of various strategies and use of different approaches in teaching especially when the cultures are diverse. This also depends on the subject matter in which case different situations require the use and application of suitable strategies that enhance learner understanding. The application of various teaching learning strategies enables a teacher understand the learner better, analyse their strengths and weaknesses hence facilitate proper content delivery and understanding. Teaching abroad entails the use of a diverse application of teaching strategies basically as a result of resource availability and therefore a teacher is well able to utilize these resources and strategies in a wide content ensuring that the learner understands better. In some cases the teacher also has the opportunity to interact with the learners during practical lessons which form the basis of important learning activities in most of the foreign curriculums. This enhances the teacher’s mastery of content and understanding, knowledge that is passed on to the learners.
The faculty’s ability to teach abroad also ensures that they learn the importance and role of a faculty that has international experience in the society and by extension the global welfare. This happens through the faculty’s ability to acquire and diversify their knowledge on all issues affecting the society enabling them to carry out beneficial activities to the society at large in addition to teaching. This includes activities such as community based development programs, community sensitization and awareness on issues that affect the society such as HIV/AIDS, family planning among others that generally uplift the life’s of the society in their countries of origin and elsewhere. A good number of faculties take up social responsibility activities in the society playing a pivotal role in enhancing the welfare of the community they live in. This leads to the passing of crucial knowledge to the community that enhances their welfare by increasing awareness; the faculty therefore has a role to play in the wider society apart from teaching in their respective schools/colleges and institutions.
Moreover, when teaching abroad, the faculty is able to understand and appreciate the existence of diverse cultures and therefore be able to incooperate them when teaching such that all the cultures feel comfortable at any point dealing and interacting with each other. Through this, a culturally diverse culture is created, one that appreciates each others well being, capabilities and believes and one that is able to co exist in harmony. According to Rosenthah, B. and Buchholz, R. A. (2000), the faculty acts as the salt in most societies basically because of the central role that they play in the sustainance of a harmonious society and therefore they inculcate good understanding, unity and cooperation amongst the members of a society through their appreciation and leading the way in harmonizing these cultures. The ability of the faculty to interact with a diverse range of cultures also enables them understand each of these cultures and hence facilitate their effective transition in to the society creating a mutual understanding amongst themselves. In this regard, the society and institution members appreciate and respect each others culture and believes as well traditions creating a harmonious co-existence. This creates and promotes an avenue of peaceful co-existence amongst each other as they are able to understand the other society members in a better way reducing any instances of conflict and misunderstanding amongst themselves.
Similarly, Cottrell, A. (2002) asserts that the teaching of a faculty abroad enables them understand and pass this on to the learners that learning is not just about memorizing but a long term process that passes on information, skills and knowledge to the learners. Teaching is a broad aspect and has a permanent impact on a learners life and therefore emphasis should be made on the learners ability to understand the ideas, knowledge and skills presented and be able to use and apply this to his/her life enhancing their life and that of the society in general. As a result, the faculty’s understanding of the importance of the role that they play in learners life makes them teach to the best of their knowledge so that the learner does not only learn but gets ideas, understands and applies that knowledge to make a better life rather than memorizing content to pass examinations. The faculty is therefore able to instill life changing skills and knowledge in to learner’s lives.
In his view, Kelly, C. M. (1998) argues that when the faculty teaches abroad, this enables him/her use the various teaching strategies practically a fact that enhances a learners understanding of the content, using that to demonstrate to the learners how crucial that knowledge is. Therefore, the learner gets to grasp the ideas presented in a meaningful way than when they could have been presented orally. In many cases, academies abroad make use of and utilize practical examples to aid learners understanding of the various concepts being taught. The faculty is directly involved in this set of affairs and therefore, this acts as a critical aspect in enhancing the understanding of the various concepts being taught inside and outside the classroom. The practical use of teaching strategies has been singled out as one of the most effective ways known to teach. If utilized by the faculty, a tremendous understanding of the issues presented thereof could be made and therefore the faculty should make use of this strategy.
According to Nadejda, L. , (2009); as a faculty member based abroad, an individual is in a better position than any other to influence many young persons and therefore one can truly make a difference both in the learner’s life, the community and their life too. Once the learners are done with their studies, it’s most likely that the many of the student graduates have a chance to work in different countries later on in their life’s as adults in different capacities, say as ambassadors, prominent business people or even leaders in their respective countries, a faculty’s role is therefore such a significant one considering the impact that such people would have on their life’s. As a result of their experiences abroad and their unique perspectives, international learners definitely have the potential to influence the future in a great way. They are likely to be involved in major policy making initiatives both in their countries of origin and the diverse regions and therefore a faculty should inculcate responsibility and long standing virtues that guide the learner when making such crucial decisions that affect the larger community. The role the faculty plays acts to guide and encourage them hence give them the necessary tools and skills to lead. This helps the faculty understand the importance of their profession, work and the role they play in the society.
In conclusion, the presentation of an opportunity to a faculty to teach abroad is always a wonderful opportunity that is mostly life changing as a result of the opportunities that one comes across as a faculty abroad. It’s also a huge responsibility that one should effectively carry out as result of the impact it has especially on the learner’s lives. Such a faculty should be guided by and provided with adequate resources that facilitate the carrying out of their work hence ensure maximum productivity. It is a great opportunity to enrich an individual’s life as well as that of the community around them by imparting special skills and knowledge, one that has a life time impact on the beneficiaries. Seelye, H. N. and Wasilewski, J. H. (1996) explain that whether ones return to their country of origin is difficult or not, every international educator who gets a chance to teach abroad acknowledges that the experience of working abroad has enriched their lives immensely. This happens basically through high level of international awareness of students that one interacts with while teaching and the high level of parental, institution and professional support provided by all stakeholders that makes their work more fulfilling. However, in a few selected cases some of the faculty members regret that some institutions (schools) do not recognize their possession of unique knowledge. In many cases, the success of their international school teaching experience, skills and knowledge keeps many educators abroad for much longer periods than they had originally planned to spent. This is also a unique opportunity that presents one with a special learning opportunity to interact with people from all walks of life creating an understanding of diverse culture and appreciation of diversity in the society.