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Monday, August 8, 2011

The New Office

My office moved over the weekend, from downtown to the international business district. The new office is bright and clean and funky-Swedish-designed to the nines. EF is big on making their spaces look cool.

We have rooms built of glass walls, elevated spaces with cushions to sit on for impromptu meetings, columns of green plants growing up through three floors of anti-cubicle desk arrangements, & a track of monkey bars bolted to the ceiling for an alternative mode of transportation between departments.

It's all very exciting & new. We're having a great time playing around on the rock climbing wall, making chalk drawings on our personal lockers, & experimenting with the new cappuccino machine. Woohoo! Google ain't got nothin' on us!

Today we received our shiny new security badges, complete with photo & job title - the kind that you clip to your belt & swipe to get into the building. I'm an official nine-to-fiver now, complete with membership card - something I never thought I'd be.

It's been quite an interesting experience - being an office grunt. In many ways it has posed challenges I never knew existed. For one thing, I've discovered that staying quiet, focused & seated for eight hours a day is difficult for me. Really difficult.

But It's been a good project for me to spend this year in an office. I've gotten a greater insight into what goes on behind the scenes. Not only do I understand the mechanics of curriculum development better, I've also gotten a glimpse into how office politics work - it's a whole new culture for me. 

But most of all, I've realized that I really do love teaching. I love the interaction with students. I love creating a lesson & getting immediate feedback in the classroom. I love moving around as I work. I love the creativity that comes with teaching. & I love being personally invested in what I do for a living. Let someone else climb the ladder to VP of Academics. I'm quite happy in the classroom, thank you.

So I've started looking for ways to meld my two loves together: travel & teaching. EF offers online teaching - like having a Skype call with students - & the teachers have the opportunity to live anywhere in the world. I just need a healthy internet connection. I've already started teaching a few classes per week, & hope to continue with that full time after I leave China at the end of the year.


Scott said...

Nancy! Nice new digs. That is very cool about being able to teach from online. So you think you can make that work for a full time job? Very cool! Keep us up to date!

Nancy Lewis said...

The need is definitely there, so there would be plenty of work for me, with the added bonus of scheduling flexibility. Maybe I can go back to being a night owl :)

Blake said...

Your new workspace is very lovely. It must be very inspiring to teach in that kind of setting. Do they really have monkey bars in between departments? Just a thought: have anyone tried using it to move from one department to another?

Blake Mitchell

Nancy Lewis said...

Welcome Blake! Unfortunately, we didn't get to teach in the funky-cool office, & in spite of the efforts by the designers to build spaces that promote interaction among colleagues, there was very little face-to-face communication between us. & the monkey bars were quickly forgotten as people went back to climbing the corporate ladder.

I have since escaped that nine-to-five lifestyle, making online teaching & freelance editing my full-time job as I travel freely around the globe. Lucky me!