Until my departure for NAISAK, I taught English Language and English Literature in England, having previously worked in Scotland. My teaching career began in Ireland and I was later lucky enough to work directly for the Irish Department of Education, training and supporting teachers throughout the country. My career has also allowed me to teach ESL in Poland, Spain and Thailand.
Aside from seeing the world, my other loves are cooking (and eating!), dogs, reading, rugby, swimming and theatre. My favourite book is Ulysses by James Joyce and I also love the works of Irish playwright, Brian Friel, especially Dancing at Lughnasa. Lately, I have tried my hand at growing my own fruit and vegetables but I’m not sure how this will go in Al Khor…
My family are very important to me. They are still in my home town and I love to go back to visit. My favourite day of the year is St. Patrick’s Day and it is always the day I’m most homesick if I am not in Ireland.
I am delighted to continue my professional journey by joining the NAISAK community and I look forward very much to helping my students love English as much as I do.
I completed a four-year combined undergraduate degree and professional teaching qualification at the Pontifical University of Maynooth, Dublin, qualifying as a teacher of English and Religious Studies. I have enjoyed teaching English and Religious Studies in equal measure. During my first years as a teacher, I also studied part-time to complete a Masters degree in Education.
My post-graduate qualification allowed me to work directly with the Irish Department of Education, implementing a new national curriculum in secondary schools. It was exciting and challenging. Through working with hundreds of teachers, I learned that there is no one formula for being a great teacher; the very first thing is to know each of your students, meet them where they are at on their learning journey and then take them forward along the best route for them. This understanding has enabled me to enjoy my teaching to, and improve the learning of, thousands of students whom I have been lucky enough to meet around the world.
My greatest aspiration in life is now to see as much of the world as I possibly can, punctuating my travels with frequent visits to my family in Ireland. Previously, I aspired to gain as many formal qualifications and career progressions as I could. After a professional life spanning two decades, I am now comfortable in my abilities as an educator and I have identified that the best way to combine my aspirations is to open myself up to teaching new students in new countries, and to learn as much from them as I teach them. And enjoying life along the way!
Here are what some of my current students say about me:
“You have been by far one of the best teachers I have had and you have gone above and beyond expectations, helping me find confidence which is amazing.”
“I cannot begin to thank you enough for your incredible support in English and opening it up to me in ways I had never even though of – I will miss learning through your sense of humour and sarcasm!”
“Thank you for being an amazing teacher not just to me but for the rest of our class, I was really hoping to have you as my English teacher again next year and I am gutted you are leaving.”
I have worked in several schools in several countries. Every single school is different. NAISAK will be different to any other because I have not taught in this part of the world before and a whole new system of education awaits me. My challenge will be to bring my knowledge and understanding of the British curriculum, to this new international environment. I am very much looking forward to getting to know my students and to discovering the ways in which I can help them to love my subject, thereby enjoying their time with me and achieving their very best.