TEFL training, and along with it, orientation to the teaching fellowship in the Yale-China Association, is over. Tonight, the eight first-year teachers will separate, everyone to his or her site: two to Xiuning, four to Changsha, and two here in Hong Kong.
My destination, of course, is Yali Middle School in Changsha, Hunan. The emotions running through me are complex, to a point where I am unable to describe them myself. After two weeks of mentally tasking training in Hong Kong, I feel a real excitement to get there, meet my students, and begin this journey already. The excitement I feel now is more intense than what I felt at graduation and more on par with the energy running through me the first time I stepped on the Yale campus, as a freshman.
At the same time, I can't deny that a part of me is extremely nervous. How will the students receive me? What can I offer them? How do I survive in China for two years? The questions are endless.
I am very fortunate though, because I have the most supportive and caring staff at Yale-China Association, both in HK and back in New Haven. They are so knowledgeable and helpful, and will definitely be an avenue I frequently cross for both practical advice on teaching methods to more abstract issues, reflection, and finding what kind of teacher I want to be.
Also, the other teaching fellows, both first-years and second years, are some of the most passionate people I've come across, and I don't doubt I will be turning to them for ideas and support.
And lastly, I am fortunate to have such supportive family members. Which parents would let their child go away for four years, and then, without much complaint, for another two? Mom and dad: I promise I will come home, sooner or later! Siblings: Apologies for having to leave so many family stuff for you guys to take care of. I will pick up my share in the future, I promise. Miss all of you!