I started teaching as a TEFL teacher in 2006 in Phuket. I enjoyed working in Thai government schools so much that I started to consider a career as an educator. As such, I looked into the international school set-up, and was lucky to be offered a position as a Summer Camp counsellor at the British International School, Phuket.
This opportunity turned out to be a changing point in my professional life. The school’s leadership offered me a full-time position, providing that I would get a PGCE, which led to me enrolling with the University of Nottingham. Consequently, I became an important part of BIS Phuket, namely in KS1 and KS2, by being a part-time Boarding Parent, French and German teacher, a part of the learning support team, as well as a football coach. I also continued to run the school’s Summer Camps as an assistant director, as well as director, enjoying the sporting and adventure activities with students from all around the world. In terms of achievements, I managed to lead my U9 football team to 1st place in the BIS Phuket annual International Football Tournament, for the first time ever. Academically, I am proud to have helped my Primary students reach Levels A1 and A2 in their chosen Modern Foreign Language.
However, after spending six years in Thailand, I felt a real need to make a conscious decision about my future, which I felt could only be done by having some distance. As such I found employment as a MFL and English teacher in Turkey, a country with a culture very different to that of Thailand.
Three years spent there were hugely enjoyable, enriching, and successful in terms of personal and student development and achievements. An example of this is leading a High School debate team to 1st place in the Turkish round of The World Scholars’ Cup. My time in Turkey also enabled me to reflect and to recognise how much I liked and missed Thailand, which led to me coming to St. Andrews International School Bangkok.
I grew up in various countries and was fortunate enough to experience different education systems and to pick up a few languages along the way. Before deciding to become a teacher I worked as a Hospitality manager, bringing me in touch with various cultures and people. During this time I realised that I enjoyed managing and teaching, but that it was more young people that I enjoyed ‘serving’.
I feel a great connection with young learners and am very enthusiastic about helping them to achieve their potential – something that probably relates to the huge influence on my life by various teachers and counsellors when I was considered a ‘difficult’ young learner. As a result, it is not just subject content that I enjoy teaching. I am passionate about transmitting positive values, based on respect for other living beings and the environment, a hard-working ethos, being healthy, eating well, and exercising correctly. I like to see teaching as a calling, something more than just a job, as I enjoy the idea of helping young people on their paths. I hope to one day be able to ‘give’ to my very own children, maybe even here in Thailand.
St. Andrews is different to all others I have worked at because of the tangible spirit of all-inclusiveness and friendliness. It is really noticeable how happy everyone here is, staff, students and the parent community alike. I feel that everyone gets something positive out of being here at St. Andrews, which is not the case in every school. Additionally, teachers are supported in every way. Resources and help are always available, which of course has a positive impact on student learning, and this is also something that is not to be taken for granted in every school.
Finally, the physical environment of the school is, to me, conducive to a sense of order, calm, well-being, and ultimately learning.
"Mr. Christophe is like a big brother. He is caring and helpful."
"Mr. Christophe is funny and sometimes crazy. We enjoy class with him!"