We're in the thick of TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) training right now--every day involves 5 hours of TEFL lectures and lesson planning workshops, 2 hours of Mandarin lessons, and 1 hour of teaching an ESL class, with lesson planning meetings and homework at night. Same schedule on weekends. We will have 1 day off in the middle of this 3 week course and I think everyone is already looking forward to it. It's quite busy, quite educational--not very conducive to exploring the city we're in, but very conducive to preparing us for a full-time job as teachers at the end of August.
Because of my well-known love for wearing clothes (I highly recommend everyone should do it--wear clothes, I mean), I have found the rules for what we're allowed to wear here rather interesting. We're required to wear "Teacher clothes" throughout the day, whether we are teaching or attending classes or just walking around the college campus that we are staying on. This doesn't necessarily mean dress slacks, pencil skirts, and blazers for women--for which I am extremely grateful--the average temperature has been 88 degrees, and it's a 5-10 minute outdoors walk between classrooms, so you don't necessarily want to wear thicker clothes than you have to.
The most important rules for both men and women seem to be that your shoes have a closed toe and heel, and that you have some sort of sleeve, enough to cover your shoulders at least. Jeans and shorts aren't allowed. Men have to wear collared shirts, and ties for any banquets or meetings with higher-ups. Women don't have to have collars, they can wear dresses or skirts or pants--and there don't seem to be any color restrictions, which makes my heart very happy.
It seems to me a very common sense dress code, and I am very glad that I long ago established a habit of collecting knee-length cotton dresses with full skirts and short sleeves--they're a style I love to wear and one that's appropriate for teaching a class of elementary schoolchildren. I'm currently teaching a 6th grade class while Angel's teaching a 3rd grade class.
Neither Angel nor I are used to dressing "professionally" every day. He's worn scrubs his entire adult career...and when I was in beauty school I did dress professionally, but all in black--which, of course, I will never do again unless I'm forced to. While wearing dresses is very normal for me, while Angel prefers shorts and a t-shirt, so I love seeing him wearing slacks and a dress shirt every day--what a newly fashionable husband I have!
We just had to take pictures of our outfits on our very first day of training (by we, I do mean I), as proper documentation of the event. It's a little embarrassing to admit how excited I was to find a headband and a bracelet and earrings to put on--because we started packing early and have been traveling so long and just living out of our backpacks rather than disturbing our suitcases, I'd gone a very long time with any accessories at all. I missed them greatly.
So, I suppose this post was all to say that I'm having a lot of fun getting dressed for work. I have gotten several comments from others in our class calling my outfits "creative" or "colorful" or "unique"...I haven't yet divulged at all that I'm sort of a fashion and lifestyle blogger...I don't know if I should...
Also, could we just pretend for a bit that I am purposefully going for the retro pincurl look with my bangs? In all honesty--I haven't yet been able to find a flat iron here and that's what my hair does of its own accord...