Claire Leong, Head of Learning Area (Languages), returned to teaching in 2015 after 12 years in industry with a focus on sharing her passion for learning languages with students. In August of 2019, Claire flew to Sydney for the Australian Education Awards, having been nominated for the Department Head of the Year.
Why do you teach?
Teaching is a huge privilege. I feel like I have a responsibility to mentor young people to be the best person they can be. The world needs thoughtful, caring and insightful young people who can work with others in creating change and contributing to solving world issues. Teaching a language means that I feel like I am contributing to a better world every day.
Wesley’s vision resonated with me, “Be an innovative learning community in which students are empowered to lead purposeful lives” and when I met with the leadership team they wanted me to help them create the best possible languages learning program I could imagine. The opportunity to create a team, a space and a new program was incredibly exciting.
What is one of the most important lessons you want your students to learn from you?
We all need to be role models of what we want to see more of in the world.
How do you ensure each student learns how to learn?
Learning is really like living well. You need to be brave, you have to choose to be vulnerable, put in the hard yards, take risks and trust your team. This is what learning languages is all about at Wesley.