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    British International School of Chicago, South Loop

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    British International School of Chicago, South Loop | Private School Chicago

Jessica Gurney

Jessica Gurney

English Specialist

Teaching English at British International School of Chicago is consistently rewarding; our students are passionate readers and writers. Helping them to harness their potential to be critical and reflective thinkers in relation to their own writing, and their analysis of the writing of others, makes every day enjoyable!

After graduating with a degree in English and United States literature, I worked in a university admissions office, which involved delivering advice and guidance to university applicants. During the four years I worked for the university, my conviction for the life-shaping potential for education grew immeasurably.  Prior to teaching at BISC, I gained a number of experiences that shaped my teaching career. I was an examiner on three different exam syllabi for students taking International Baccalaurate equivalent exams, which led to me taking the role of Coordinator of Years 12-13 English at my previous school. I enjoy planning diverse and challenging lessons to meet the needs of all students and am pleased to be able to build on this experience in my role as Head of English.

I have also enjoyed planning activities for students to enrich their education experience. Notably, the team-building day at the outward bound center, Irons Oaks, encouraged students to effectively work in teams to problem-solve. In addition, the opportunity to organize the residential trips to London, and to Berlin, Dresden, and Prague, has been a pleasure. Residential trips allow a unique opportunity to get to know our students better as they acquire knowledge in real-world situations, experience new places and culture and learn outside of their comfort zone.

In my spare time, I enjoy cooking and trying out new recipes, as well as reading – particularly historical fiction. I am looking forward to continuing to explore Chicago and America during school breaks over the years to come. When time permits it, I enjoy going on breaks outdoors – the highlight of which was a trip to the Smoky Mountains.

This school is different to all others I have worked at because our students have a thirst for knowledge and academic achievement which is unparalleled. The student body is diverse and our students are quick to welcome new students and make them feel at home. The dedication of the staff at BISC is impressive; students work hard with their teachers - both in lessons and in after school clubs - in order to excel, and staff are constantly looking for opportunities for enrichment and development.

What Students Say

"Miss Gurney is my best English teacher yet; she has helped me to develop my analytical skills and my writing. I hope I have Miss Gurney again next year!"

"Miss Gurney constantly goes out of her way to make sure her students are prepared for the final IGCSE exams. She is always available if any students need help, and is supportive of everyone’s analytical talent. I have learned so much about what is required and how I can go on to achieve an A grade. Miss Gurney is a fantastic teacher!"

"I feel as though Miss Gurney will do anything to help me achieve my goals inside and outside the classroom. No matter how many corrections there are in my work, she is always there to encourage me to work harder. I am confident that she is the best English teacher I have ever had!"

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