Tyler Wansley’s life so far has a poetic charm to it. He has very definitely taken the road less traveled. Born in Florida, raised in New Hampshire, attended college in Vermont, lived in China, Tyler now resides in Boston making his daily commute to Braintree an almost easy drive.
Assistant Principal Gina Mathews is thrilled that Tyler landed at Williams. “Lucky! We are so lucky to have Tyler. I like to think of him as a transition counselor for our International Students. The title isn’t an official one but it’s what he is along with being an excellent classroom teacher. He knows these kids and their unique needs.”
So, how did this intrepid traveler find his way into a classroom? Receiving his Bachelors in Animal Science from UVM, Tyler was confident that he would one day be a biology teacher. In his senior year of college, he signed up for a Mandarin Chinese class. He shares, “I had trouble with Spanish classes over the five years of studying Spanish, but somehow excelled in Mandarin. I had been studying Chinese philosophy and history and that motivated me to move to China to improve my Mandarin and to get some teaching experience. I thought I would return home and be back to the sciences, but I fell in love with the international relations aspect of my job and now find myself still teaching English and I love it!” In his fifth year of teaching ESL at AW, Tyler appreciates even more what this career path has given him. Living and studying in China gave Tyler “a good understanding of Chinese culture and language, but the most important thing I learned was how to be a global citizen. I learned how to truly appreciate other cultures and encourage others to see the beauty in what makes us all different. In the end, culture was the hardest part of living abroad for me, but when you learn to laugh at how weird your own culture is too, it all becomes easier.” For Tyler, “cultural understanding is a two way street, and it works best when all parties come in with an open mind and a welcoming point of view.”
Tyler has brought positivity to our ESL program and its students. A peek into his classroom is a window to bridges being built between cultures and languages.