I remember the very first time I stood in front of a bunch of little ones and had to teach them something. Granted, I was in my comfort-zone (if by comfort-zone you mean: struggling to get them to stay quiet, listen, respond or generally be somewhat manageable). I’m kidding, of course, I was nowhere close to being in my comfort-zone.

At the time, my sister ran the Kids Ministry at our local church and she asked me to help her out one Sunday morning by teaching the kiddies a fun dance. Getting them to move was the easy part; getting them to move in the same way at the same time, well, I’m sure you can imagine. It was fun though, but I never considered myself to be “good with children”.

A few years later I taught at an arts school for young ones. It was a Saturday afternoon gig that I did with my sister. It seems my sister kept roping me into these things… Could she have had a sinister plan? Regardless, I actually ended up liking the classes. I got to do silly dances, teach singing, see the kids acting dramatic, all while trying to keep a straight face when they tell me, in all seriousness: “There aren’t any boys in the class, because they’ve all been killed.” Wait, what!? Again, it was fun.

But I’ve always been an organizer; a procedure-driven, administrative mind so, I never considered teaching at all. Firstly, because I’m not too good at the “speaking in public in front of people that judge you constantly” thing. And secondly because, well, kids scare me a little bit. Teaching was right at the bottom of my possible careers list, right next to waitressing.

But then I needed to make a drastic change because my own sanity and happiness was at stake. I Googled; oh my goodness, I Googled so many things. And after a while, I noticed that I kept looking for things that I could do from home because I had gotten married and my long-term plan was to have a flexible enough schedule for when we start a family.

I had friends teaching English as a second language abroad, but it never appealed to me. However during my Google adventures, Teaching English Online kept popping up and I decided to go for it. I did the course, I sent out my CV, I followed up, I waited, and at some point I wondered if I was ever going to get a response.

But I did. My experience during the application and interview process with IQBar was amazing. Everyone was so accommodating, helpful and supportive from the first moment the process started. Through the Trial Period, I got to know so many people and right now, during my first month as a contracted Buddy, I feel like I’ve joined a family. I’m not afraid to ask questions, ask for help or make mistakes, because the support and guidance is so positive.

And above all, teaching young kids (one-on-one, because as you would remember, groups scare me!) has become the highlight of my day. Seeing their faces, their commitment, makes me feel so motivated. Watching them grow, learn and try their best is so rewarding.

And being part of a teaching culture that invests in helping others grow and better themselves is all that I dreamed it could be.

Kids still scare me, but I think I’ll be okay!

Wanda is a contracted Buddy at IQBar.