Hello Barb!!

I would like to make some observations about you, China, and the Buckland International Education Group that may be helpful to those considering teaching in China for the first time. First, I have found the Chinese people to be friendly and helpful to those of us from the outside. I rarely greet someone who does not smile and communicate with me in a positive nonverbal fashion. In Yangshuo there are, partly in thanks to your efforts, many people who speak some English. As a Dutch friend and I described you last night, you are an extrovert and entrepreneur, extraordinaire who has promoted the use of English in southern China.

Your new teachers need to be aware that they will get a wonderful and exciting experience in China. As an emeritus professor, I think prospective teachers need to be aware that Buckland College students would be considered more like American high school students. Some may later become university students. The prospective teacher needs to be clear about their qualifications. For example, as a past secondary social science teacher, college professor, and administrator I may be competent to teach oral English but I cannot pretend that I am trained to teach English or English as a Second Language (ESL). The prospective teacher needs to be aware that you will do your best to make their living accommodations comfortable but that it will not be like living in a suburban United States home. They need to be aware that the salary will be more than their Chinese colleagues earn but if they live only on their salary they will need a conservative life style. They can be assured that classes may be large but the students will be a source of great satisfaction.

In brief, being associated with your schools and being in China is an opportunity to learn about Chinese culture, to see many exciting and beautiful sites, to grow intellectually, and develop a sense that one has made a contribution in their few months with the Buckland International Education Group.


Richard D. Carter


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