This is just a small little introduction to me. I don’t expect many people to be all that interested, the only people reading this probably already know me just as well as I do. But I am going to be doing something extraordinary in my life pretty soon, at least in my opinion. I will be leaving my safe, wonderful community here in southern California and moving around the world with two suitcases and a carry-on. In short, I’m going to become an ALT (Assistant Language Teacher) in a public school in Japan!
And this, I honestly want to share with everybody because I:
1.) want to preserve the memories,
2.) want everybody I know and love in the grand ol’ U.S. of A. to know what I am up to and not worry (once I actually leave), and
3.) I think it’s worth talking about! Right now, everything is still far enough away as to be unreal.
The application/interview processes to actually have a job when I get there are ongoing. And pretty much excitement trumps fear for the next 4 months or so (April 2014, oh that’s sooo far away!) but I think I will need to write about it when that sets in, and right now I need to write about it so I don’t just explode all over the room from not screaming this opportunity from the rooftops!
There are two main programs I am applying to. JET and Interac. The main difference is that JET is sponsored by the Japanese government and pays better. But Interac is more likely to put me into an elementary school and actually hire me! Pros and cons all around. 🙂
I first got the idea to teach abroad from an SCTA meeting at my college (thanks Dr. Hawkins!) and she had told a story about her former students in JET. I originally thought about international American schools because I would be an actual elementary teacher, not just an English teacher. But you need a credential for that and that wasn’t in the cards this spring so I fell upon the idea of teaching English. It was always my strongest subject anyway and there are far more job options in the field. Next I just had to decide where!
If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go? It seems most everyone has an answer to this and for all of my life I would always scream: CHINA! However, everyone but my grandma had an issue with this it seems. (Communism and all that. Whatever.) So I went with my second most favorite place: JAPAN! So now everyone is happy that I’m going to the safest country in the world (though you can bet your socks I am making that side visit to China!) and I am endeavoring to learn some of the language! Yikes! New alphabet and grammar structure, no sweat right? But since learning about the ALT position and with the knowledge that I can actually be a part of the public school system Japan has quickly become my very first choice! (And if I come back loaded down with Pokemon stuff, who can complain about that too?)
Anywho, I started this blog because I think my life is soon going to get way more exciting and scary than I can handle alone and so poof! Here it all goes into the void that is the WWW. Going to Japan has been a dream of mine for a long time now, and I can’t wait to actually make something this big a reality. After all, if your dreams don’t scare you, you’re not dreaming big enough!