Where in the World is Katie?

While Katie Kastner volunteered with the Peace Corps in Morocco, she discovered that she sincerely enjoyed teaching English.  So once she returned to the U.S., she completed English for Life’s TESOL course in Charleston while pursuing a  Master of Arts in Teaching from The Citadel.  Her goal was to return to the Middle East after she earned her teaching certification.


Katie at the Sheik Zayed Grand Mosque!

Katie at the Sheik Zayed Grand Mosque!


Please tell us what you are doing these days.

I am currently living in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates.  I teach English to local children at an all-girls high school.  My husband, daughter, and I arrived at the beginning of September, so we have only been in the country for a short time.  We are enjoying life thus far, especially since teachers were granted a 9-day vacation for the Muslim Eid holiday.  The students’ levels of English vary here, but the country’s aim is to make education in all public schools completely bi-lingual (Arabic and English)

Bet you have some interesting stories.

Just before the holiday, I asked for my students’ attention in order to inform them of the homework assignment.  The girls all yelled, “Teacher, no!” but I insisted.  I let them sweat it out for a minute and then announced, “Enjoy your break!”  Those who understood laughed and translated for their classmates.  The session ended on a high note, as each girl laughed and patted me on the back as she exited the classroom.

How does teaching make you feel? 

Teaching, regardless of where you are in the world, is exhausting.  It’s similar to parenting in that you experience moments of extreme frustration followed almost immediately by moments of intense pride.  As a teacher, I find it difficult to turn off my “caring button.”  No matter how difficult the student, I think we as teachers yearn for each child to achieve success in some area of his or her life.  We sacrifice our time (and sanity), convinced that those we help will change the world for the better.

Any words of advice for TESOL graduates or other teachers? 

Take advantage of opportunities to travel overseas.  Traveling will broaden your perspective and enrich your life.  And you never want to be that old guy who laments, “I wish I’d done that when I was younger.”


 Do you have a passion for helping people learn something new?  Consider teaching with English for Life’s TESOL certification course.  Our classes are flexible, affordable, challenging and FUN!  Teach, travel and transform your world.

About The Author


Director of Unusual Circumstances: Teacher, trainer, coach, consultant. Find out more about me at: About Us