Alumni Spotlight: Katey Shanahan

Katey Shanahan is originally from Cape Cod, Massachusetts. She graduated from Bentley University in Waltham, MA and then relocated to San Diego, CA before picking up again to head to Southeast Asia. She loves to cook, travel, teach, and learn.

Day in the Life of Katey Shanahan - English Teacher in Thailand

Highlights: It is hard to pick just one highlight from my time with LJBS in Thailand. Overall, the people I have met and the relationships I have formed with others are definitely a major part of the experience. It is amazing to think that I never would have met these students, co-workers, and friends if I had never been here. There has been such great personal and cultural exchange throughout my experience (teaching and otherwise) that I will take with me forever.

The ability to travel to new places is another of my favorite parts of teaching in Thailand. It is fairly easy to get around Thailand and not too much trouble to travel to neighboring countries. I was able to see some great parts of Cambodia, the temples of Angkor Wat, the vastness of Thailand from Bangkok to the islands of Phi Phi, and all the landscapes down to Malaysia. I am learning new things all the time and always have something to keep me busy. I'm excited to know that there will always be somewhere new to go, something new to do, and someone new to meet.

Morning: My mornings are spent teaching kindergarten. I live close to the school and ride my bike to get there. I arrive at school to prepare the classroom at 7:30am. My students arrive around 8am to respect the flag, have their milk, and settle into class. I teach the students in my classroom from about 8:30 until 11:30. During that time we learn new vocabulary, practice English phonics and speaking, and writing. We do lots of singing, activities, story-time and art projects to review what we have learned.

Afternoon: My morning teaching schedule allows me to prepare for my upcoming classes in the afternoons. After I am done teaching in the classroom at 12 noon, I take an hour lunch before coming back to school. When I get back I make notes on how the morning's class went regarding specific activities and student problems that need to be addressed I also make notes on the things I need to work on. After this, I make lesson plans and gather materials for the coming days and weeks. The curriculum for my classes is provided by the school, but I create and plan all of the fun activities that make the classes more interactive for the students.

Evening: During the week I leave school at 3:30pm and usually have things planned for the evening ahead of time. Depending on the day, I might have a Thai language lesson, a kickboxing or cardio workout planned, or a trip to the market to get groceries or do some shopping. I often make my own dinner at home, but sometimes will explore and eat at the market, food stalls, or local restaurants. Other days I will make plans with other local English teachers to meet up for dinner or other organized activities. Before I go to bed I'll chat with people from home online or via Skype, catch up on the news, Facebook, and update my blog. On the weekends I like to really mix it up and travel to nearby towns and beaches, or stay in town to hang out and relax!