Teacher Tuesday: Mr Steven Morgan
With over 30 nationalities at Kinabalu International School, our English as a Second Language (ESL) Department works with many students to support the development of their English skills, both through in-class support and smaller group sessions. Mr Steven Morgan heads up the ESL Department and joined KIS in August 2017:
How many years have you been teaching and what countries have you taught in?
I’ve been teaching for more than 15 years, actually about 17 years now, and I’ve taught in the United States, Taiwan, Thailand and Malaysia.
When did you join KIS?
I joined KIS in August of 2017.
Why did you decide to come to KIS?
It was truly a perfect fit for me. After teaching in a rather large school in Bangkok for five years, I was looking for a smaller more personal setting. I also wanted to live closer to nature, and at KIS, I have it all.
What’s your motivation for teaching?
The students. They always have such varying learning needs and I’m motivated to do whatever it takes to help each student succeed.
What classroom resource or teaching technique is your favourite and why?
Technology plays an important role in my lessons. I use audio / video, PowerPoint and online resources to help create a positive, student-centered environment. ICT also helps me create rich context for my lessons, enabling students to make connections and relate the material to their own lives.
How would you students describe you?
They would describe me as demanding and kind. I set high expectations for my students, yet they understand that I always have their best interests in mind.
What advice would you give to parents of ESL students joining an international school?
I would advise them to be patient with their child. It can initially be difficult for students who have not studied in English-medium education to adjust to the demands of using English for academic purposes. However, they tend to make good progress after they have adjusted.
If you could learn any language which would you choose and why?
Now that I’m here, I would like to learn Bahasa Malaysia. It’s always interesting to communicate using the local language.
What are you looking forward to doing in KK when you’re not working?
I’m looking forward to enjoying the islands, beaches and mountains.