Sept. 12, 2017

TAB in China: Q&A with Reggie McClellan

Reggie McClellan shares his thoughts about his upcoming TAB experience
Reggie McClellan
Reggie shares his thoughts about his upcoming TAB experience

What do you hope to gain personally and professionally from this experience?

I hope to gain some valuable experience teaching ELL students while building some confidence and comfort for myself in the classroom. There are more ELLs in today’s classroom than ever before and I think having some experience teaching English overseas could help prepare teachers for this challenge. I also think TAB will help me become a more well-rounded teacher when I graduate, giving me a unique experience to develop my teaching skills that I wouldn’t have developed in Canada. Personally, I think this opportunity will be a great experience that will help me learn a lot about myself, and grow as a person. I think that travelling is an amazing learning experience because it exposes you to so many different perspectives and cultures.

What do you hope people in your host country will gain from your involvement in TAB?

I hope to be able teach the students English in a unique, fun and exciting way. I want to provide them with an experience they will remember. Moreover, I hope to inspire other students in the host country to be interested in learning more about Canada and other cultures. I want to leave them with a very positive view of Canada, its culture, and its people. I hope to provide inspiration for them to travel to Canada themselves in the future, and perhaps even do an international exchange. In general, I want to show them how great international collaboration can be.

What are you doing/ have you done to prepare either personally or professionally for this experience?

I have had the opportunity to travel around Europe twice and to Australia. All of my travels were an unbelievable experience. I had so much fun immersing myself into all the different cultures, and seeing what it was like to live in each country. I really enjoyed learning about different cultures and seeing how they differ from our own. After travelling around Europe for the first time, I knew I wanted to move to another country and teach English at some point in my life. For this experience specifically, I have started teaching myself some basic Chinese language skills, and talked to friends and family who have visited China about their experiences.

Why did you choose the country you will be travelling to?

I chose China because I have always wanted to go there but have never had the right reason or opportunity. I also think that their culture is vastly different from our own, and it will allow me to learn the most and enrich my experience. I myself am half Chinese, and this is one of the reasons I have wanted to visit China. I do not speak Cantonese or Mandarin, so I am looking forward to the challenge of navigating past these language barriers. I took a Chinese history class during my undergrad and found the history fascinating, this is another reason I choose to visit China.