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Teaching Experience at Interkids Bilingual School
Messages from Ms. Lindsay Black
“My experience teaching at IBS
was amazi...
Messages from Ms. Carly Sethman
“Thai-changing Experience” Before I made the decision to move to Thailand my life
school. I have been immersed in such culturally diverse activities organized by IBS including student
achievement, teacher...
   dad.	...
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Teaching Experience at Interkids Bilingual School

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What a wonderful school filled with wonderful people. If you've ever considered teaching abroad, I highly recommend this school in Bangkok, Thailand. I also high recommend XploreAsia as explained here: https://www.goabroad.com/interviews/kim-staflund-2016-program-participant?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=1

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Teaching Experience at Interkids Bilingual School

  1. 1. Teaching Experience at Interkids Bilingual School Messages from Ms. Lindsay Black “My experience teaching at IBS was amazing and unforgettable.” The very first day I felt welcomed and was greeted with a smile. Everyone at IBS was very helpful and friendly throughout my entire stay. Everyone also went out of their way to ensure that I was included in all of the events and activities and I also felt part of the IBS community. It was very nice to see all of the different teachers getting along and working together even though there was a language barrier. I really liked how all of the teachers were always smiling and welcoming towards the students and parents in the morning at the large gate. The teachers came to work ready to teach and rarely complained about their duties. The school always tried to accommodate and work with the parents to guarantee the best learning environment for their student. One of my favorite memories from working at IBS was attending and performing the Teacher’s Day celebration. I felt so honored to be a part of the Thai dance performance and the foreign teacher performance. Also, the speech given by the director was so inspiring, moving and heartfelt that I started to tear up. I will never forget that event and hopefully try to bring some of that tradition to my school in America. It was also very great to experience and witness all of the great school spirit that the students and staff all had. All of the events were very elaborate and really showed the parents how much this school treasures their students and honors each event. Also, for each event it was very nice to see how the students and teachers all put in the extra time and effort to prepare and clean up. Lastly, it was really amazing to be part of such an amazing work environment. All of the teachers came to school prepared and put in so much effort on a daily basis to provide the best education to each student. All the teachers and the administration are not only very hard working, but are also always smiling, joking and enjoying life to the fullest. Being able to complete your job and teach the children while also having a smile on your face and laugh throughout the day is what really sets the good work environments and the amazing work environments apart and IBS is unquestionably an AMAZING place to work at. My only suggestions would be to orient the foreign teachers a little more at the beginning before they start working. Show them how to check the books and the form to record the book checking. Another suggestion would be to inform the teachers a little more in advance about upcoming expectations and changes. Many teachers have families at home and it is considerate to provide them with the upcoming changes to uniform or events or grading policies a few days in advance. Thank you so much for hiring and allowing me to be part of the IBS community. I will never forget all that I have learned while working at your school and will bring it with me where I teach next!
  2. 2. Messages from Ms. Carly Sethman   “Thai-changing Experience” Before I made the decision to move to Thailand my life was filled with uncertainties and I was becoming increasingly more nervous about my “life plan.” I graduated college with a dual Bachelor’s of Science in elementary and special education and spent the next three years teaching in a variety of different settings trying to find where I felt fulfilled. Growing up I had distinct dream of joining the PeaceCorps after college graduation and to make a small difference in the world by teaching in a country in need of teachers. Reality of life as a poor, naïve college alumni set in after graduation and I chose the path more well beaten to work and save money. Three years later, unsettled, unsatisfied, and craving the dream I once had, I discovered teaching abroad through the programs Greenheart Travel and XploreAsia. September 30, 2016 the airplane carrying me and my absurd amount of luggage landed in Bangkok, Thailand and my life hasn’t stop improving every day since. Through a well designed TESOL course and cultural emersion program developed by XploreAsia, I spent the first month learning and adapting. The program facilitates job placement throughout Thailand using a layout of preferences from the participant. My preference list included only one: ‘Anywhere EXCEPT Bangkok.’ Ironically this is precisely where I was placed. They call it serendipity, when something happens by chance in a happy or beneficial way. I was linked with a private bilingual school located on the outskirts of the city, Interkids Bilingual School (IBS), where I have been teaching K1-3 and grades 4-9 in English, phonics, and reading. “Serendipitous” is the word I choose to describe my experience teaching here at IBS thus far. I’ve compared IBS to the 5 star resort of schools in Thailand. At our school, students learn using a cross-curricular approach in Thai, English, and Chinese. They are given a rigorous class schedule and are facilitated to carry the morals of today’s leaders. The organization, support of management, and welcoming school environment are aspects of IBS that impressed me from the start. I am continually overwhelmed with the incredible extra-curricular activities and events offered at this
  3. 3. school. I have been immersed in such culturally diverse activities organized by IBS including student achievement, teacher recognition and Thai/Chinese holidays. Many differences exist between the American schools I grew up and taught in and the Thai school system. Although they both carry benefits, the love, warmth, and family-like environment that exists at IBS should be compared second to none. I am in no position to rate and compare the quality of education across Thailand, nor America. I am young and in the scheme of life have only experienced a small amount. What I can testify to however, is the quality of experience I have gained by becoming a part of the IBS family. Moving to Thailand has completely changed my life but working at IBS has made that life change more positive, joyful and uplifting than I could have ever anticipated. During this journey I’ve inadvertently stumbled over my own world views and collided with unfamiliar ground. All the while, the welcoming and accepting culture of my co-workers and management provided me with comfort and confidence to get up, dust myself off and develop personal growth to see the world as the bright place it is. I am confident my experience in Thailand would be completely different had I not chosen XploreAsia, had my preferences totally disregarded, and been placed to teach here at Interkids Bilingual School. Messages from Ms. Kim Staflund To  the  management,  staff,  parents,  and   students  of  Interkids  Bilingual  School  (IBS):   As  my  one  semester  of  teaching  at  IBS3  comes   to  an  end,  I  want  to  express  my  gratitude  and   appreciation   to   you   all.   These   six   months   in   Thailand   have   been   wonderful   beyond   my   expectations;  and,  although  I’ll  be  delighted  to   see  my  friends  and  family  back  in  Canada  again   very   soon,   I   will   definitely   miss   all   my   new   friends  and  my  IBS  family  here  in  Bangkok.   I’ve   always   had   a   great   deal   of   respect   for   teachers,   but   that   respect   has   grown   even   stronger  after  being  a  part  of  this  school.  Even  before  the  school  year  officially  began,  in  early   May  2016  I  was  asked  to  attend  a  team  building  day  for  all  the  full-­‐time  teachers  of  IBS1,  IBS2,   and   IBS3.   On   this   day,   I   got   my   first   real   glimpse   of   the   professionalism   and   dedication   of   everyone   at   IBS.   So   much   thought   and   planning   went   into   every   single   presentation   and   activity.  It  wasn’t  only  about  educating  us;  it  was  about  making  the  day  fun  for  us  so  we  would   enjoy  our  time  together.  That  extra  bit  of  preparation  takes  a  real  effort,  and  I’ve  continued  to   see   this   level   of   effort   put   in   by   IBS   management   and   staff   with   everything   from   morning   assemblies   and   daily   classroom   management   to   the   more   elaborate   celebrations   such   as   Asanha  Bucha  and  Buddhist  Lent  Day,  Thai  Language  Day,  and  Mother’s  Day.   When  I  told  my  family  back  in  Canada  that  we’re  at  school  by  seven  o’clock  every  single  day  so   we  can  “Wai”  the  students  and  wish  them  a  good  morning  as  they  arrive,  they  were  impressed.   That’s  not  something  we  do  in  Canadian  schools;  but,  as  a  parent,  I  can  definitely  see  the  value   in  it.  I  know  how  hard  it  sometimes  is  to  drop  off  a  child  at  school—especially  the  little  ones  
  4. 4. who  are  crying  because  they  just  want   to   stay   at   home   with   mom   and   dad.   That   kind   of   thing   hurts   a   parent’s   heart;   so,   I   think   it’s   great   that   IBS   sees   its   teachers’   responsibilities   as   not  only  teaching  the  students  but  also   providing  them  with  a  safe  and  caring   environment  all  day  long,  to  give  their   parents   that   extra   peace   of   mind.   I   think   it’s   a   beautiful   thing   that   the   students  are  greeted  by  their  teachers   with   a   “good   morning”   every   single   day,  and  I  enjoy  doing  it.     I’m   not   only   impressed   by   the   teachers  at  this  school,  but  also  by  the  students.  I  continue  to  be  amazed  whenever  I  see  five-­‐ year-­‐olds   standing   on   a   stage,   holding   a   microphone   in   their   tiny   hands,   and   doing   public   speaking  in  front  of  large  groups  of  their  peers,  teachers,  and  parents.  Actually,  I’m  impressed   when  any  of  the  students  do  it;  and  I’ve  seen  many  of  them,  in  all  age  groups,  stand  on  that   stage  and  either  speak  or  sing  or  dance  in  front  of  large  crowds  of  people.  I  suppose  I  have  no   excuse  for  how  nervous  I  sometimes  feel  when  I’m  handed  a  microphone  and  asked  to  say  a   little  something  to  our  students’  parents.  If  these  kids  can  do  it,  then  so  can  I.     Thank  you  also  for  hanging  that  Canadian  flag  up  at  IBS3.  I  know  the  main  reason  for  hanging   up  those  flags  is  to  show  each  parent  all  the  different  countries  your  teachers  come  from  to   help  make  their  child  a  child  of  the  world.  I’m  sure  that  makes  them  feel  proud,  but  I  want  you   to  know  it  also  made  me  feel  proud.  I  love  my  country  as  much  as  you  love  yours,  so  that  little   extra   attention   to   detail   on   your   part—even   something   as   simple   as   hanging   up   a   flag— touched  my  heart.  It  made  me  smile.       Truth  be  told,  I’ve  never  been  treated  as  well  as  I’ve  been  treated  by  everyone  at  IBS.  You’ve  all   gone  above  and  beyond  to  make  my  time  here  really  special,  and  I  do  appreciate  it.  And  my   students?  What  little  sweethearts  they  all  are!  Boy,  am  I  going  to  be  in  for  a  rude  awakening   when   I   return   to   Canada   and   I’m   not   smothered   with   the   hugs   and   “I   love   yous”   of   several   children  every  time  I  walk  into  a  room.  I’ll  definitely  miss  that,  and  I  promise  you  I’m  really   cherishing  every  little  hug  I  get  from  them  during  these  last  few  weeks  at  IBS.       I  want  you  to  know  how  very  grateful  I  am   for   the   experience,   and   now   it’s   time   for   me   to   return   home   to   my   family   in   Canada.  I  miss  them.  It’s  as  simple  as  that.   It   was   always   my   intention   to   return   home  eventually.     What   I   didn’t   expect   was   how   much   I   would  grow  to  love  Thailand  while  I  was   here!   I   can   definitely   see   myself   visiting   again  some  day,  and  I’ll  be  sure  to  stop  by   IBS   to   say   hello   when   I   do.   Thank   you   again   for   a   wonderful   and   life-­‐changing   experience.  I  will  miss  you  all  very  much.     Teaching Experience at Interkids Bilingual School