Monday, January 10, 2011

Things to Consider

There are things I regularly think about, that I know I want. (Sorry if the list sounds very needy. I think we're all entitled to want things, as long as we're willing to put in the work to make them happen!) :)

I want to have my parents know my kids, if and when I have them.
I want to live in the same city, should one of my parents one day be left to live alone.
I want my kids to be able to speak Chinese and to know the stories of our family, fables from our culture.
I want to go back to school.
I want to get back to dancing multiple times a week.
I want to get better at dancing.
I want to learn another language, then another.
I want to be a better teacher tomorrow than today.

I want to work for a school that has PD built into their schedule and their budget.
I want a school that allows me to move around to teach different math classes over time.
I want a school that pays enough for me to travel and to put away money.
I want a school that has small classes.
I want a school where teachers plan collaboratively, where teachers support each other with lesson resources.
I want a school where I can have access to computers, projectors, math manipulatives.
I want a school that offers language classes for teachers.
I want a school whose administrators I feel I can trust.
I want a commute that is under an hour, that doesn't involve driving.

I want an apartment that I can afford, in a neighborhood where I feel safe to walk around at night.
I want to live in a city that has outdoors activities at least part of the time.
I want to live near an international airport.
I want to live in a country where it's (culturally and legally) okay to live together before marriage, where it's encouraged for young people to talk about birth control.

Those are the things that I think about, because I am who I am at this particular point in my life. They help me formulate the questions that I ask when I talk to school administrators, because I know that making an international job decision, in a way, is more complicated than it seems, but in another way cannot be simpler. You need to know exactly what you want out of your job, your home, and your life. And then just really go for it.

PS. Shockingly, it's looking like I might not go to the job fair in London after all! A good opportunity has crept up (from my massive November/December email campaign) that just might turn into a solid offer. If so, then Geoff and I will have to make some quick decisions next week...


  1. What do you want to go back to school for?

    Allen's mom seems convinced that because I speak minimal amounts of Mandarin, I'll be able to teach Allen, and so our kids will have a fighting chance of speaking as well. No pressure!

  2. Not sure. Even if I keep doing exactly what I'm doing now, I'm going to want to accumulate enough credits to be bumped to the highest pay scale.

    But, more likely than not I'll end up actually getting a degree related to education. I don't know what it will be yet...

    By the way, that's very funny about Allen's mom. :) I think it's very difficult to teach your child a native language that your spouse doesn't share; you have to stick to your guns and absolutely only speak to that child in that language. I've seen a mixed baby who speaks Chinese fluently though -- totally possible!!