I¡¯ve been teaching East Asians how to speak English for about 4 years now – and I¡¯ve never had any major problems. I¡¯ve handled Korean, Taiwanese, Japanese and Chinese students and I can honestly say without a doubt in my mind that the greatest obstacle to a student¡¯s desire to speak English isn¡¯t their cultural background or ethnicity – it¡¯s their own willingness to learn. The best students are those who strive to succeed.
Aside from being an English teacher, I am also a newspaper writer. Writing has given me many opportunities to research various topics – many of them are interesting, and all of them can be used for discussion. Writing has also enhanced my vocabulary, and I learn new words all the time.
Something that sets me apart from other teachers is my accent. I was born in the United States and grew up listening to American English, which made it my mother tongue. It also helped that I was raised in an upper-class family that speaks English most of the time. This exposure to western-style English made me realize how unrefined and coarse the Filipino accent is, and I correct many mistakes that some Filipino teachers do not even realize they are making. (For example, a Filipino would say ¡°book¡± with an o͞o sound instead of an o͝o sound.) I can also recognize the different accents of the United States, from the Texas drawl to the Californian rising accent, which makes me great at teaching students how to speak like a westerner.