We have an amazing team of inspirational teachers here at The British School of Beijing, Sanlitun, all of whom are passionate about teaching and learning and ensuring each and every one of our students make exceptional progress.
This week, we interviewed Charmaine Brown, the Reception Turtles Class Teacher, who talks about her teaching life at BSB Sanlitun and more!
Q: Why did you decide to teach at BSB Sanlitun?
I heard about Nord Anglia Education from a teacher I worked with in the UK who had left to teach in Thailand. She was very positive about the company and her experience, so I discussed with my youngest daughter how she felt about moving abroad for me to teach and she was up for it.
I was keen for a change of environment and wanted to challenge myself. I also needed to ensure that my daughter would be at a school that taught the British National Curriculum as I didn’t want to disrupt her education too much. My daughter was 13 when we first arrived in Beijing and she was very excited about our new adventure too.
Q: What is your role at BSB Sanlitun?
At the moment, I am the Assistant Head of Early Years and a Reception teacher in the Turtles class. I have been teaching Reception for the last 4 years and I really love it. The children are so enthusiastic and keen to learn.
Q: Describe a day in your life at school.
My Morning starts at about 7:15 when I arrive at school, I set up my classroom based on what learning is taking place that week and what skills the children need to continue working on. I try to make sure my environment has fun and interesting activities that promote independence and collaboration.
The children start their day with a writing task, then have a Phonics lesson which is one of my favourite lessons to teach. I try to make these lessons fun and fast paced to keep the children engaged. We then go outside and have outdoor learning experiences that can range from physical to small world or maths activities.
After their Snack time, I will teach a lesson on the carpet, this could be Maths, Literacy or Topic. Usually, these lessons are interactive and give the children in my class an opportunity to practise the skills we are learning that week. After this, the children get the chance to practise what I have taught through practical activities at the tables.
At Lunchtime, I sit with my class while they eat and this gives me the chance to have chat and joke with them while ensuring they all eat well and demonstrate some good table manners. After this the children go outside with their year group until it’s time for the afternoon lessons to take place.
Q: What do you enjoy most about teaching?
I really enjoy teaching children to read, it is a passion of mine. It is just great seeing them first learn the initial sounds in words, then begin to blend them and finally read a three sound word. This eventually leads to them reading their first book, and seeing the elation in their faces is the greatest feeling. I believe that teaching in Reception gives you the chance to experience a lot of firsts in learning that will become the foundation for all future learning to take place.
Q: Tell us about your life outside of school?
Outside of school, I like to spend time with my daughter at home watching movies and anime series. I enjoy baking cakes and desserts and making home cooked meals.
I also like participating in group events such as game nights, group hikes and different craft activities. Recently, I took part in a candle-making and body bar creation event. It was so much fun and I enjoyed personalising the scents I wanted for my candle and body bar.