IEC Teachers and Staff

When the Teacher Becomes the Student: IEC@DVC Teacher Allison Teaching in China and Learning Mandarin

November 13, 2018

IEC@DVC teacher Allison Grant is spending 10 months in China, where she is learning Mandarin and teaching English. Follow her experience on the IEC@DVC Blog!

Allison with students at IEC. Allison is now teaching English in China for 10 months. 

Let’s hear from Allison.

A little bit about me:

Hi! My name is Allison Grant and I am a teacher at IEC. I am currently in China right now for a 10 month teaching Fellowship with the US State Department. This program assigns experienced teachers to train prospective English teachers in that country. The goal of the program is to promote quality English teaching abroad and good will between the two countries.

I am assigned to Xiangsihu College of Guangxi University for Nationalities in Nanning, Guangxi, China.

Before coming to China, I had very few expectations about what my new life here would be like. I was both excited and nervous to start this new adventure. I will be in China for 10 months total. I had begun to study Mandarin Chinese to prepare for my trip. I had a private tutor and some of my students at IEC helped me learn a little too. Learning Chinese has helped me gain more empathy for my students. I now know exactly how difficult it is to learn a new language that is so different from my own. I had experience before learning Spanish, but Chinese was going to be much more difficult to learn.

Right now, I am just focusing on learning basic Chinese Speaking skills. By the time I come back to IEC, I’d like to be able to communicate with my Chinese Speaking students just a little bit. I’d like to be able to help them more than I was able to before. Even if I can’t speak very well, I know that I will be able to understand their culture and use my experience to connect with all of my students on a deeper level.

Well, that’s all for now. Stay tuned to hear about my time in China at the half way point of my trip!

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