Yani is in her fifth year with Bilingual and is currently teaching Grade 3.
To be honest, my first year here was really difficult. I had nearly no teaching experience, and the differences between the Hungarian educational system and the American one didn’t make things any easier. I was often overwhelmed, but I always felt supported by the people around me, and I think that’s a big reason things turned around. My Hungarian co-teachers – the people I teach alongside in the classroom – are such lovely, kind people. Even though there have been some language barriers, they welcomed me with open arms and I consider them good friends now. I know it couldn’t have been easy for them to adjust to a new, very green, foreign co-worker, but they went out of their way to help me, explain things, and try make my adjustment easier. The Americans in the company also went out of their way to help me out, regularly reaching out to offer advice, support, and strategies that I could implement in the classroom. I’m now going on four years in Budapest, and I feel like my experience teaching now is completely the opposite of what it was. It’s become so much easier and more natural and I feel a lot more confident. But the best part of this job is by far the students. Most teachers here stay with the same group of students for several years, so you really get to know them and form close relationships with them. I feel so lucky to be able to teach such bright, enthusiastic, warm children who make me laugh every day, and am still close with many of my previous students! You form a kind of family with your co-teachers and students, which I think is a really special thing. And it certainly doesn’t hurt that I get to work in one of the most beautiful cities in the world!