One of my favorite things about working at Smith’s is the Soapbox itself. It gives us teachers the chance to inform students as well as other teachers about our experiences working in Japan. Sharing information that is either educational, inspirational or just entertaining is what it’s all about. If there is one thing I’ve learned from teaching English in Japan is that everyone has a different schedule. Some people work at public schools so they’re free in the evenings and have a regular weekend, at Smith’s and other conversational schools (英会話) classes usually run until 9 or 10 at night with a day off on Sunday and maybe another day during the week. With such a difference in schedules getting together with other teachers can prove challenging.
In the past I’ve been lucky enough to have met Martin from Kotoen , Edward from Otsu, and Al from Okamoto. And each time I’ve been able to get valuable information that I can apply either in the classroom or to my business. One day I hope I’ll be able to get the chance to meet all the other teachers in the system but till then I know that I can post things here and get my message out.
With Soapbox I’m able to reach out and touch people, both those I know and those I don’t. Recently one student from another Smith’s school actually found me on Facebook and told me how much he enjoyed reading my articles. I’m just glad to know that people are getting something out of all the hard work from all of the teachers at Smith’s.
That’s what it’s all about, in a single word, caring. That’s what we do at Smith’s, we care.