I was born in Kenya of British-Irish parents and have spent most of my life either in South Africa or Britain. In 2000, due to my personal economic crisis, I turned to Teaching English and have never looked back.
Wall Street attracted me by the quality of teacher supervision and observation, as well as the organisation of materials and the student data system. During my probation, I was able to meet the CEO Tim Daniels and was impressed by his down-to-earth interest and personal involvement at grass roots level. I knew I was in the right place.
I have been fortunate to work with some very good managers, Sharon Long, Johann Folscher, Michael Rolufs and Ben Thompson, who encouraged me to use my gifts and talents to enlarge responsibilities and try new and different approaches. I have enjoyed creating new material, getting feedback, strengthening my teaching skills and generally benefitting from their input.
Right now I am in the process of completing a Delta course and discovering how the Wall Street method is incredibly different from the methods of other schools. The relaxed, friendly atmosphere, interaction among different levels and focus on fluency and learner autonomy put Wall Street in a unique position in my experience.
Learning why the Wall Street system works as it does from the Acquisition Cycle to the recycling of language in CC and SC classes makes the encounters more meaningful and even exciting – generating ‘Eureka’ moments: so this is why we do it!
I would encourage teachers to attend training and to try to understand. It is tempting to say ‘yes, yes’ and then go and do your own thing (much like our students not listening to us!). In fact, I would encourage teachers to attempt Delta training as just the experience is enlightening. The students feel the benefit as they see a much more confident teacher who is able to give them the answer but lets them try to work it out for themselves, helps them towards the right answer and finally is able to confidently say ‘correct!’
My only goal, besides to keep improving as a teacher, is to see students leaving Wall Street with good speaking skills, passing the TOEFL or IELTS, and on their way to fulfilling their dreams.