Bakri loves being a teacher again
Bakri started his first job at the Job Centre without any experience of administrative work. It was a new, enriching experience for him, and his knowledge of the language grew.
To begin with his work entailed helping clients, then he went on to be a resource for clients, informing unemployed people about the labour market and plans for getting established.
– I liked the work at the Job Centre. It gave me a lot of practical experience and I learned how to treat people, Bakri says.
But his love of teaching was still there , especially when he couldn’t get a permanent job at the Job Centre. So he went round a few schools and asked if there was a job for him as a teacher.
– I signed a contract in August with Kviinge school here in Hanaskog which gives me a job until June 2019. I teach English, Swedish, geography and maths in a Class 4, says Bakri. He and another teacher share the work of the class.
Changing jobs was important for him – from working with information for adults to teaching chidren. It wasn’t easy to begin with,
– I had to change my way of thinking and do more preparation for my lessons, to explain things simply. Adults can manage, they can find information on their own.
What is your experience of teaching children from different backgrounds?
– In the class there are children who have grown up in Sweden and immigrants with different backgrounds. The children who were not born in Sweden speak good Swedish, but they have problems with spelling. I start by giving a lesson for everyone, with uncomplicated ideas to make them curious about the subject, and then I give extra help to those who need it, Bakri says.
Ann-Sofie Jönsson, headteacher at Kviinge school, has only prositive things to say about having Bakri on the staff.
– It's important that people who work here come from different backgrounds as regard culture, languague and experience. It developes our work.
Bakri has worked as a teacher in Sweden before. He did some teaching practice while he was waiting for asylum. Then he only used English.
Now Bakri plans to find a permanent job in school. But for that he must have the proper authorisation as a qualified teacher.
You speak good English. Did that make it easier for you to learn Swedish?
– The languages have a lot in common, and that helped me. If you can speak English, you can manage quite well. So I wondered, ’Why am I studying Swedish?’ But if I’m going to be a good teacher I must be able to speak Swedish. Otherwise I’ll be isolated, both at work and in the community, Bakri answers.
– From what I’ve seen, I think job-seekers could exert themselves more to find work, and not simply wait for the Job Centre to do something. If you’re looking for a job, it’s a good idea to make an effort to learn the language. I know a lot of people who have missed the chance of a job because of language. As far as schools are concerned, there are plenty of jobs for assistant teachers for people who would like to be teachers.