A Day in the Life of a Kindergarten Teacher - Hong Kong

Hey there! I’m Tanny, or Ms. Tanny as my kindy kids call me but please don’t ever call me that, haha.

If you’re here, you’ve probably already read about the life of a Native English Teacher working in a learning centre. Well, I’m here to shed some light on another position you might want to consider: working as a NET in an international kindergarten.

Just a quick fyi before I get into the juicy stuff – I only teach for 30 minutes twice a day but do not be fooled by the apparent lack of timetabled teaching hours. My hands are always full even when I’m not stood in front of a whiteboard!

Let’s dive in…

8:00 AM

I catch the train to work. It’s only a 15-20 minute journey which isn’t too bad at all and means I don’t have to wake up insanely early either!

8:30 AM

My morning class (almost thirty, very energetic young’uns) start to arrive and get settled in. They know the routine like the back of their hand, so I watch over them while they do their own thing!

9:00 AM

We do a quick morning exercise/greeting which is usually one or two songs. It gets the kids pumped up for the day ahead and even does a good job of waking me up. I’m not a morning person at all so these 15 minutes work just as well as a strong cup of coffee!

9:30 AM

I teach my circle time (30 minutes of teaching phonics/vocabulary/sight words or maths depending on the day).

10 AM

My Chinese class partner teaches her circle time. This is my chance to mark homework books because I don’t get any free periods or anything like that!

10:30 AM

The kids are feeling peckish and so am I! It’s tea (or snack) time!

11 AM

Time for the kids to do their work! Whatever isn’t finished is completed at home.

11:30 AM

Because my 4 year-olds aren’t your average, run-of-the-mill kindy kids, they learn more than two languages and usually have a Putonghua class! If not, then it’s gym class which they love!

12:00 PM

There’s usually a piece of artwork we need to complete and send home that week so I get started on that with the kids. I’ll try to do something fun too instead of making it “all work and no play” so I’ll throw in some word/number games or read a book.

12:30 PM

Time to put their little backpacks on and go home but for me, it’s lunchtime! I get to save a little bit of money here thankfully because my school provides food. Living/food expenses can get high here in Hong Kong so every little helps (not sponsored by Tesco, promise). It’s also a nice opportunity to catch up with my lovely colleagues!

1:15 PM

Rinse and repeat everything I did in the morning but with my afternoon class. I have just under twenty kids in the afternoon so it’s way less hectic than my morning class.

5 PM

Home time for the afternoon kiddos and almost home time for me! And no, it’s not free time to chill out and check my phone! I usually prepare the materials for the next day, do some paperwork or work on my display board. Busy, busy, busy!

5:30 PM

Time to go home! I don’t like staying behind til six unless I really have to so I make it my personal mission to CLOCK. OUT. ON. THE. DOT.

6 PM

I’m home and in bed. Just kidding. Partly. There have been occasions where I’ve had to crash because my kids have drained all my energy. But more often than not, I’ll do some shopping/cooking/laundry/other standard adult stuff or just grab some dinner/drinks with friends. Sometimes I like to take walks along the many many promenades dotted around this wonderful place, just for the sake of it or to snap a pic or two for the ‘gram!

That’s definitely one thing I love about living here – how easy it is to get things done, whatever you have planned. Your friend might be working on the other end of the island from you and yeah, it sounds like it’s far but in reality, it’ll take you 30 minutes or so before you’re both clinking cocktail glasses and unwinding for the night! The promenade might be just around the corner from your flat and you only have to walk a few feet before you’re staring straight at a flurry of bright lights on skyscrapers.

That’s the beauty of teaching in Hong Kong – no two days are the same, be it in the classroom or outside; the convenience is incredible, and there’s just about something for everyone! Words alone don’t do the H.K experience any justice. You must see it for yourself! Until then, I’m happy to answer any questions you have via IG (@tannylh)!

All the best,