Tuesday, April 24, 2012

My speech on the NZ training centre opening ceremony of SJTU

My speech on the NZ training centre opening ceremony of SJTU

Greetings to our respected guests, education leaders, teachers, and my fellow schoolmates:
下午好,Good afternoon,Kiaora.
Welcome to the New Zealand Training Centre Signing Ceremony of Shanghai Jiao Tong University Graduate Students.
My name is Song Jiao, I am one of the graduate students whose major is Teaching Chinese to Speakers of Other Languages back home in China. Today I am honored to speak on behalf of all the Mandarin Language Assistants from our University.

 I have been in New Zealand for two months and this is my first time traveling out of China.
I still remember the day when I first knew that I had passed the interview of the Confucius Institute and was given the opportunity of coming here to Auckland to teach Mandarin for a year. After a short while of unbelievable feeling about the news and excitement, to tell the truth, a huge panic hit me. I began to worry about leaving home for such a long time and for such a long distance. Questions began building in my mind.
What was I going to do if I missed home,or if I could not get used to the climate, the food, accommodation, the culture, school. Then what about the children that I would teach. Would they like me? Would I be a good teacher?

So I called mum for her advice. I said, “Mum, I’m leaving you for a year. Will you miss me? I asked her that question just like a little girl.
My mum replied, “Come on, you are 24 years-old. Go and experience a different life. You would be foolish to lose such a wonderful opportunity.

Now she sounds a little regretful. Yesterday we spoke by phone and she told me that she missed me very much and asked me when was I returning home.
 “Mum I enjoy my life and my work here.  I have so much fun, and there are still more experiences waiting for me. Of course I miss you too. ”That’s all I could tell her.

I like movies and just like Forest Gump’s mother said, “Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're going to get until you taste them.”
I do like my New Zealand life and I am glad to be here. I am glad to be part of the Confucius Institute with all the other Mandarin Language Assistants.
I was lucky to be chosen to teach at three lovely schools. My schools are Newmarket Primary, Kohia Terrace and Our lady of the Sacred Heart.
All the principals and teachers from the three schools have been supportive and have given me help and guidance for teaching, making resources and how to work with young children. All the children that I have worked with are lovely, polite and creative. Teaching them is a joyful experience. I feel part of all the schools and not only as language teacher.

At the moment I live with a nice lady who is my homestay mum.
She cooks me delicious meals and has showed me some beautiful places to visit.
She helps me a lot with both life and school.

From speaking with other Language Assistants I believe that they have similar experiences with their schools and homestays.
We are in different schools and homestays yet we are still a team and we care for each other. We regularly meet. We sight see on weekends and during the holidays. We visit each other’s home or do something else together. We are not alone here because we have each other for support and friendship.

 To finish with, on behalf of all the MLAs from Shanghai Jiao Tong University, I would like to offer our sincere gratitude to our university for giving us this wonderful opportunity to come here to Auckland as a MLA. I would also like to thank Confucius Institute who let us pass the interview and for providing support and concern on our work and life. Thank you to all our schools in Auckland who gave us lovely children to teach, a great help in our teaching and for finding us kind homes and families to stay with. 再次感谢所有给予我们机会和支持的人,谢谢你们。

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