I had never travelled overseas for any extended time. So you can imagine the nerves that I experienced when I decided to take this dive.
To an inexperienced American traveler China is a mystery. Wonderful English took the time to communicate with me regularly and help me when I was unsure what to do. Sophie was our main contact and was quick to answer any questions when we had the in a timely manner.
Upon arrival we were picked up from the airport and taken to a hotel, and then taken apartment hunting the next day. We were housed quickly and had someone to help us with every step. We were introduced to the school and teachers, followed with a two week introduction and orientation. This includes watching teachers in class and reviewing the materials.
When we began teaching in public schools we had a representative from the school with us to help guide us through the confusion.
Housing in Songjiang is very affordable and their are several metro stations to help get around. The pay is more than sufficient for a comfortable lifestyle. The staff is friendly and the neighborhood is very safe.