When you have decided that moving abroad is what you want to do, often time half the battle is easing your family’s anxieties surrounding your decision. Here are 5 tips to show that your parents and family that just because you are out of the country doesn’t mean you are out of touch.
1.) Let them know where you will be staying. Provide an address and if you can a phone number. Your family just wants to know that they can contact you.
2.) Introduce them to World Clock. This will allow them to quickly check the local time where you are and give them an idea what you might be up to –working, sleeping etc
3.) Share your thought and decision making process with them. Help them understand where you are coming from. Share links and contacts you used to help make your decision.
4.) Treat them to an international phone card or do a little research on phone plans that will allow you to connect with each other.
5.) If you parents are not already computer savvy, hook them up with skype. Show them how easy it is and just how much you can do with it!
Moving abroad is exciting for you and can be nerve racking for your family. Consider them in the process and keep every one updated on all the great things you will do and see in Australia!
As the school year gets underway in Australia, use some of that new energy and make a conscience effort to reflect on your first week of teaching. Here are a few tips to get your started:
1. How much of an effort did I make to get to know my students?
2. What do my students know about me?
3. What did I learn from my students this week?
4. Did I set my classroom rules and have I been clear in communicating them?
5. Did I spent some time getting to know new colleagues?
6. Have I asked for help when I needed it or offered to help a new teacher?
7. What is my plan to communicate with the parents? When do I want to do this?
8. What are some new teaching techniques that I want to try this year?
9. How do I want my students to remember this year?
New and experienced teachers may have different things to reflect on, but for anyone starting in a new role there are a number of practical things everyone should check off to ensure a smooth transition . As the school year continues and things get busy take the time reflect on who you are as a teacher and what are the most important lessons you want your students to learn.
Being prepared will significantly reduce the stress surrounding your move to another country. You need to make a list and carry with you in your phone or on piece of paper with your passport and keep it close during your travels. Here are some small but helpful tips to help you stay organized avoid unnecessary hassles.
1.) Check and double check your flight departure, arrival times and connections. Remember the airline ticket will list the arrival time according to the country you are going. Understanding your itinerary will let you prepare accordingly for layovers and how much time you can expect to be in the air.
2.) If there is a time difference set your watch or phone to the time of the country. This way you once you are there and needing to sort out public transit schedules, business hours etc you will not be trying to convert the time difference as you go.
3.) Have the address handy of the location you need to go once you have arrived. This is essential. A neighbourhood or general directions will not cut it.
4.) Go with the local currency in your wallet and avoid the hassle of finding an ATM and paying fees in foreign currencies.
5.) Research the tipping customs of the country. This help will avoid awkward moments especially if you are traveling by taxi, grabbing a quick bite to eat at a restaurant, dealing with hotel staff etc.
6.) Once you arrive at your accommodations, ask for a local convenient store to buy some small essentials and snacks. Having something nutritious to eat the first morning you wake up in a new place is settling. You may want to bring food on the plane- but please research the customs and border control.
7.) Contact your family to let them know you arrived safely. It is easy to get caught up when you first arrive in a new place, but remember your family needs to know that you are settled and OK!
Finding a teaching job has never been tougher. A recent article by University Affairs is reporting the reality of the teaching job market in Canada. It is discouraging for new teachers and the school boards who interview great candidates but are frustrated that they cannot guarantee new teachers more than part time work.
In Canada, the growing number of unemployed teachers is highest in Ontario. Coastal provinces are experiencing similar circumstances, but Ontario’s numbers speak for themselves as nearly 68% of new teachers are not getting full time work or even related employment.
A survey done by the Ontario College of Teachers provided grim evidence that things do not seem to be looking up for the next several years. If an applicant is able to get on a supply list, they will likely stay in this position for several years. One teacher described her on again off again work as ‘putting her life on hold’. Many frustrated, keen and talented teachers share this view.
The trend for teacher shortages and oversupply has been up and down over the decades. A retirement boom from 1998 – 2008 did not guarantee more jobs because of the number of retired teachers coming back to fill supply positions. There is still a mismatch though between the annual average number of retiring teachers of about 4, 500 compared to the 12,000 new certified teachers entering the job market.
Despite the realistic picture of what a future holds for teachers, many are still pursuing their passion – no matter what. Visit the article and post your comment. http://www.universityaffairs.
For some of you fellow Canadians teachers abroad who may be out of the loop on our nation’s top stories, let us apprise you of the gripping topic up for debate that is, our national animal: Beaver vs Polar Bear
Our dentally defective friend the beaver is under review as our national animal and could be replaced by the polar bear. One argument made in support of this change is that many people abroad do not even know what a beaver is when asked. Another point raised was that the polar bear is a more appropriate symbol of our northern land. What about the rest of Canada! Beavers can be seen in almost all part of Canada, but most of Canadians have never seen a polar bear!
The extremely hard working rodent sporting a snuggy coat of shinny fur (which had a huge impact on the trade and colonization North America) begs the question: What has the beaver done to deserve this scrutiny? Or is there something to this argument? How many times abroad have you found yourself explaining at length over a pint what a beaver is and why they are awesome? It is always good fun learning about other countries and getting the chance educating those who feel the Canadian icons of culture are ice hockey, great beer and Celine Dion. While these are things to be proud of, expand your repertoire of Canadian facts and play a round of Canada-opoly: The Ultimate Board Game. Even some Canadians are stumped with asked “What is our national animal”.
Without the beaver, Canada would not have come up the culinary magic of The Beaver Tail, aka the Canadian donut. Share a piece of the beaver love abroad and cook up a batch for your friends (because as cute as polar bears are, their tails just don’t measure up).
There are plenty of books and online materials to walk you through the steps of writing a winning resume. Since we cannot possibly cram it all in here, consider the following to be helpful and simple reminders to help your resume stand out. If you have crafted a resume and consider it an inspiring piece of art that’s great! Remember it’s never a waste of time to keep it fresh in your mind and revisit it from time to time. Keep it current and recheck for those sneaky grammatical and spelling errors. These mistakes happen to all of us if we are not careful.
Edt! eidt! Edit!
It is not enough to read over it yourself. A second and third set of eyes will be invaluable to catching errors that you may have overlooked. Read it out loud. This is the best way to see how it will read to someone else.
Be consistent with the format you use and how you list your information. Choose one and stick with it. Be mindful that you are not changing the format from one section to the other (spacing and margin alignment).
When including your personal contact information, be sure to include the most up to date and appropriate data. Your contact phone numbers should have voice mail, preferably a message that does not include “what up” or ” leave a message okie dokie!” Stating your name is always helpful.
If you have not already created a separate professional email address, may we suggest you do it. While hotpants or cuppycake may be a well earned and fun nickname, this is not the best way to set you apart from the rest of the candidates. A simple combination of first initial and last name will do and look far more professional!
Don’t shy away from the great qualities you have to share. As you already know, this is the point of a resume, and it doesn’t hurt to add more and or refresh some of your strengths. Spending one-on-one time with your resume and rewording it also helps you keep the language fresh in your mind. You want to be able to recall your assets and strengths during the interview. Your work ethic, quiet confidence, sense of humour, flexibility, adaptability, positive outlook, initiative, leadership qualities, efficiency, open-mindedness, resourcefulness etc. will shine through.
Helpful Tip: Applying for a position overseas suggests that you have an adventurous spirit and that is half the battle. Experienced and inexperienced travelers are prone to encountering some “culture shock” and it doesn’t hurt to read how others worked through it. Our article on culture shock in Australia may help you generate a few qualities to include in your resume. Qualities that highlight your willingness to learn from a new culture and share your own. These will go a long way. http://leadingout.net/blog/classroom-culture-shock-in-australia-and-tips-on-aussie-speak/.
Think of your resume as your introduction and first impression. Take the time to review and revise. We already know you are awesome teachers, let your resume reflect that.
It’s that time of year again in Canada; students are back at school, the days are getting shorter and you are remembering those summer strolls on the beach, camping or hanging on a patio. If you are not currently a Leading Out teacher and kicking back in Australia, this might tempt you to join our southern hemisphere teachers who are now gearing up for spring. Trust us, they are not looking for winter jacket sales and de-icer for their locks.
There’s no time like the present to start picturing yourself living abroad, meeting new and interesting people, and building on your skills in a new classroom environment. If you are already well seasoned traveler teaching abroad, or a new educator, here are a few reasons why you should consider Melbourne. For the first time in nearly 10 years Vancouver has been bumped from the number one spot as the top city to live. By a two point lead Melbourne has taken over and come out on top. A recent article by the Economist has ranked cities according to their live-ability which is defined by a number of factors. Check it out: at http://www.economist.com/blogs/gulliver/2011/08/liveability-ranking.
If you are looking for variety, unique experiences and immersing yourself in a laid back culture start the search for a teaching job or travel experience that Leading Out can offer! For those who have recently arrived, don’t forget the city of Melbourne’s public transportation makes it easy for you to visit new metropolitan destinations. Before planning an adventure, visit www.metlinkmelbourne.com.au to make transit simple and hassle free. There’s plenty to discover. For the most recent happenings in Melbourne we suggest visiting the City of Melbourne web page to read up on dining and nightlife, festivals, art and culture etc. It’s easy to see why Melbourne is the new number one city to live!
The most important factor for us when assisting teachers to work in Australia, is that they are happy before, during and after their stay. We pride ourselves on giving honest advice and feedback to our teachers even if it isn’t always the best news. The last thing we want is an unhappy teacher half way across the world and we do try our very best to avoid this.
With the surplus of teachers in most parts of Canada, America and even in the UK, primary teachers contact us with the hopes of securing a full-time job in Australia.
Things have changes in Australia for Primary Teachers
Primary teachers are no longer in a shortage in Australia, in fact in most parts there is a surplus. This is not good news because it does mean that it is highly unlikely you will get a full-time short-term or long-term contract before you venture over the Australia.
What Can Primary Teachers Rely On?
Australian schools like to see primary teachers in the classroom with the kids, working with the curriculum and this can be done through casual relief/supply work (CRT). After seeing you in the classroom and with some experience under your belt, you will find that contract positions might come up. So April to November is a great time to plan on working as a teacher in Australia.
When to come for Casual Relief Teaching?
We always tell our teachers the same thing…the beginning of the year (aka Feb & March) are very slow since schools have only started the year and the sun is still shining. Once sports have started, professional development for teachers and other meetings, and when the sun is no longer warming everyone up (aka winter), this becomes the busiest time for casual relief teachers (tips for Australian winters). BUT, the end of the year also slows down as schools wind down and the sun starts warming everyone up and the end is near.
What Can Primary Teachers Do?
Keep in mind that your Working Holiday Visa allows you to do as many jobs as you want (as well as the 2nd Working Holiday visa) so many of our primary teachers work as a tutor; work in a daycare; restaurant work etc.
We also recommend primary teachers get additional qualifications or something unique to their resume. Teaching French always helps, being an ICT specialist is an asset, having an intermediate qualification is a definite benefit.
We are sorry that we don’t have better news but we want to be straight up with our teachers and anyone who is thinking about coming to Australia. There is definitely work available during certain parts of the year for primary teachers, and contracts do come up, but you have to be prepared to go to Australia with casual work in mind, be open-minded and obtain unique experiences where you can.
The chill is in the air and I bet for many of you Canadian teachers, all you can think about is Term 2 teaching holidays in Melbourne. Wondering where you should go?
1) Uluru – OISE student teachers and other Leading Out teachers just returned from a great 4 day camping trip to the Outback and they have said it was incredible!
2) Great Barrier Reef – don’t miss one of the 7 wonders of the world.
3) Tasmania – a secret haven not to be missed (although cold this time of year so may want to consider a summer visit!).
4) Fraser Island, Whitsundays – Warm, so many fun outdoor activities!
5) Vietnam – beautiful country, affordable and warm!
6) Thailand – relaxing, beautiful people, great shopping!
7) Japan – unbelievable country and although going through a hard time, really is worth a visit!
8) New Zealand – incredible and one of the islands can definitely be done in 2 weeks; fantastic skiing!
9) China - history, unique, worth a visit!
We did talk quite a bit about how to find furniture in Melbourne in past posts, but what about when you leave Melbourne and want to sell all of your stuff.
Many people just give everything to an Opt Shop or worse, throw it all away! It is environmental to try and pass on all of your items to someone else. That way, they don’t have to buy everything brand new, but it also doesn’t fill up the landfill sites (and bonus, you can make a bit of money back!).
So how do you find people who would actually want your used couches, bed, fridge, kitchen utensils, desk, etc. Well we all know Ebay and for individual items, this works well but the best option for used items, we have found is Gumtree.
Gumtree Melbourne is fantastic to buy or sell the small things (utensils, plates, etc.), to bigger things (fridge, bed, desk), and you can even sell/buy cars for under $5000. Did you know you can look for work here too or a place to rent (just be careful for people who are scamming you)!