Language Sensei

A Language Teacher's Journey


colleenbioWhen I was 17 I told my parents (both teachers) that when I grew up I wasn’t going to teach – I would have a ‘real’ job. So I was a Rotary Exchange student in Japan, then worked in Japan, returned and obtained an MBA, worked in the computer software industry in Canada and then…  One day I realized what I really enjoyed was the challenge of having someone understand how the product I was promoting worked, and that I missed speaking Japanese. So, a return to university to obtain a BA in high school education. And in changing careers, more importantly, I get the opportunity to tell this story and tell my students “don’t ever say never!”

I am now a secondary school Japanese language teacher at a public school in Coquitlam BC Canada (a suburb of Vancouver).  I began teaching 18 years ago and have been at the same school for the last 12 years. As the head of the Modern Languages department, I led the integration of technology into the Language classrooms. Currently all 4 main language teachers use some form of technology in their teaching. I am keen to explore new areas of language teaching and new techniques to use in the classroom. In 2014 I step outside my room for part of my day in a new part-time role collaborating with teachers in my school – outside my discipline – to enhance their teaching experience.

Blogging is my way to share my teaching journey. I am an active participant in my Twitter PLN (@coleesensei), write articles regularly posted on and co-moderator with the Thursday (8-9pmEST) #langchat group. I am a huge believer in the 24-7 Pro-D that Twitter provides and the power of on-line (and in-person) connections to enhance the teaching and learning experience.

Enjoying the blogging journey,

Colleen Lee-Hayes

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