GROUSE ... GROUSE ... GROUSE!!!

I realize that we here in the United States consider ourselves at the top rung of the educational ladder, if only for the fact that so many foreign language students are breaking their necks to come here to both study and live English.

But, on second glance, we should not deceive ourselves. On this board, we read one teacher complaint after another pertaining to the impossible conditions of Asian ESL schools, while we fail to remember ? or, perhaps, admit ? that right here in the good old US of A, ESL instructors are pretty much in the same leaky boat! In fact, was it not this very realization that originally induced so many of us to leave our country to seek better professional pastures elsewhere? On these shores, after having met the oft-times rigid academic and certification standards of most US ESL institutions, for the mere sake of gaining employment experience, we've often found ourselves accepting as little as $12 per hour for part-time and $15 per hour for full-time employment. That, I would guess, is not that far above the national poverty level for ? say ? a family of two. But, provided one is willing to accept the all-too-often shoddy living standards of an underdeveloped foreign land, not to mention the gross disregard of apathetic management sources (with a salary to match), there's ALWAYS employment to be had ? that is, until which time one finally decides enough is enough!

In the interim, we fans of the eslteachersboard.com are literally besieged by critiques which become sadder and more desperate by the day. We KNOW all too well what you are suffering, folks. It's not exactly been a picnic here on this side of the tracks, you know. What I have trouble figuring is WHERE one might locate any regard for an ESL instructor as a "professional," let alone his/her financial needs as a human being. And if we residents of this more "sanctified" side of the Pacific are forced to utter such concerns, HOW in hell can we dare sit in condemnation of the lesser-developed ESL situations in Asia? After all, is it not WE whom they are attempting to emulate? WHY, in fact, should we cringe at the discovery of dishonesty and misrepresentation over there when right here it's so often identical? Once you've realized it's pretty much the same on either side of the Great Ocean, it's a small wonder WHY teachers flit between continents in search of their educational Mecca and, in many cases, eventually wind up frustrated enough to seek other careers.

I, for one, love the theory of English as a foreign language ? especially the preparation of students for entry into American universities for pursuit of advanced degrees. However, it's the reality of it all that serves to disillusion me no end. There can be no denial that ESL is a business. However, when such an ambition becomes the sole purpose of a school's existence, and academic and even human values seem scarcer to come by, it's high time to rise up and reform the bloody system ? or leave it! I pray that I'll not eventually be forced to opt for the latter choice. Amen.

Love to all,

The Arrogant One

About The Author

Ellis E. Seamone is an Veteran ESL teacher with 13+ years of experience. Ellis publishes articles at the http://www.eslteachersboard.com/ (free access to ESL resumes, jobs and materials). See more articles by Ellis by visiting: http://www.eslteachersboard.com/

Learning a Foreign Language: Learn from the Blind

In a previous article, you read that to establih your own lists was the best... Read More

Learn Italian in Italy

You can combine your love of the Italian language with an unforgettable experience in the... Read More

Learn to Speak Basic Chinese (Mandarin) Words and Phrases

The Chinese Language and dialectsEach province, each city and even each village speaks their own... Read More

Speaking Spanish To Increase Mind Power

Our "mind power" is largely in the way we use our words, and limited by... Read More

Uncommon Facts / Rules of English Language

English is an international language. It has so many grammar rules and each rule with... Read More

Learning French in Paris

Nothing can be more frustrating than to be in France and not been able to... Read More

Bridging the Language Gap Using Bilingual Picture Books

There are more than 39 million Hispanics live in the United States making it the... Read More

Learn Korean: Part 1 - Asian Languages and Language Families

So, you have always been fascinated by Asian culture have you? Maybe you are someone... Read More

What Does an Interpreter Do?

Many people get confused as to the difference between an interpreter and a translator. There... Read More

Teaching English in Mexico: A Decent Living?

What's more disappointing than a person who makes a promise he can't keep? A person... Read More

Chinese Pinyin or Hanyu Pinyin Overview

Chinese Pinyin is the romanization of the Chinese "written sound". Romanization approximates Mandarin pronunciation with... Read More

Can You Understand English?

There is a lot of talk about making English the official language of the USA.... Read More

Online IELTS Preparation - Why Does It Make Sense?

Because IELTS is a difficult test. While most agree that IELTS is a reasonable test,... Read More

Learning a Foreign Language: the Ventriloquists Lesson

The main feature you have to master, in order to call yourself a ventriloquist, is... Read More

Whats In A Word? More Than You Realize

What's in a word? Apparently more than we might want.For others, the ability to express... Read More

Don?t Take The Romaji Short-Cut When Learning Japanese

This is an issue many Japanese learners come up against, particularly if they live outside... Read More

GROUSE ... GROUSE ... GROUSE!!!

I realize that we here in the United States consider ourselves at the top rung... Read More

English Slang For Perplexed Tourists

I watched the British version of 'Big Brother' recently. That's the television show which is... Read More

English Language Sputtering Online Like an Old Ford!

Sad, but true. Just about everywhere you look online, the English language is suffering a... Read More

Aphasia: The Cruelest Language Barrier

Imagine the following scenario: You wake up one morning and instead of speaking English, everyone... Read More

Japanese Kanji Learning: Short-Cuts to Rapid Mastery (Part 1)

What? Kanji can be learned quickly? This seems an impossible dream to many students of... Read More

Learn Italian in Your Hometown

Are you interested in learning the Italian language right in your own hometown? There are... Read More

Teaching English in Greece - What Do You Need to Know?

The employment situation can be quite uncertain for newcomers to Greece and therefore many people... Read More

Learning a Foreign Language: Why Should you Learn Words You Never Use in Your Mother Tongue?

Imagine a child sitting in front of a desk, his head in his hands, and... Read More

Learn Korean: Part 2 - Social Status in Culture

Part 1 of this series covered the language and language families in general for the... Read More

Teaching Reading to English Language Learners

There is an increasing amount of English language learners represented in our schools for whom... Read More

Show Me the Bunny: Language Acquisition

Some children are really funny about experimenting with speech. Nonetheless, the first intelligible words bring... Read More

Learn Italian for Free

Italian is one of the most widespread languages in the world, and speaking it can... Read More

Learning a Foreign Language: the Psychological Factor

When it comes about learning a foreign language, many people wonder if they will be... Read More

7 Words Americans Should Stop Using Until Further Investigation

Relationship: Here is a word that is used to qualify, justify and honey coat just... Read More

How Ronzoni Italian Foods Helped My Dad Learn English

My dad likes to say, he was made in Italy, but born in Brooklyn New... Read More

Preschool Spanish

Why an EarlyAGE 2nd Language?Research indicates that from ages 1 through 8 is the best... Read More

Mexican Living: Todays Obsession

I would like to talk about one of my many obsessions: learning Spanish. I have... Read More

Second Language Competence Beneficial but often Misunderstood

Second language learning has associated with it many types of benefits. Among them include: social,... Read More

English Has Come A Long, Long Way...

I often wonder what would happen if Shakespeare were to be transported in a time... Read More

Japanese Kanji Learning: Short-Cuts to Rapid Mastery (Part 2)

In Japanese Kanji Learning: Short-Cuts to Rapid Mastery Part 1, we looked at mnemonic methods... Read More

How To Learn Spanish Quickly and Easily

Spanish is a very useful language to learn as it is the world's second most... Read More