I am delighted to introduce the new teachers who will be joining our expanding team next year. As you see below they bring a whole host of experience, expertise, enthusiasm and passion for teaching and learning. Their warmth, humour and professionalism shine through in their profiles. We look forward to welcoming them to our team in August.
Dr Lynn Blakemore
I am very excited to be moving to Hua Hin in the summer to join the HHIS community. I have over 30 years of experience teaching and working with children and young people in the UK, Jersey and Thailand. My most recent post was as the Lead Nursery Teacher at an International School in Bangkok. During my career I have worked with, and supported a broad range of age groups and abilities. These have included Pre-school and Primary aged children as well as Secondary and University students. This has given me an in-depth understanding and admiration of the art of learning, across different stages of development. That said, my particular passion has always been with the Early Years and I am an advocate for promoting children’s rights, which includes their right to play!
I am also a great believer in the concept of lifelong learning which is evident in my own educational journey. I have a BA (Hons) in Early Childhood Studies, which was subsequently followed by an MA and then Doctorate in Early Childhood Education, with the University of Sheffield in 2017.My hobbies include swimming, travelling and exploring new places/cultures and food.
I love spending time with our two grown children (twin girls) and I cannot wait to introduce them to the delights of Hua Hin once travel opens up again. In the meantime, I am looking forward to meeting all the children and families of HHIS very soon!
Ms Lynn will be teaching EY3.
Ms Yasmin Smedley
I am delighted to be joining the HHIS community this year. My career in education began in 2016, when I gained a PGCE at Bangor University. I have taught in the beautiful, mountainous areas of North Wales UK ever since. As a teacher, I am always looking for innovative ways to spark the children’s curiosity and ignite their imagination. I have a background in Fine Art and Performing Arts, which I quite often bring into the classroom.
The use of drama provides a fun and purposeful learning environment where the children are excited to learn and eager to ask questions. I believe that each child holds a unique magic within, and I am very excited about supporting the children of HHIS to uncover theirs.
Ms Yasmin will be teaching Y2.
Ms Yun Gu
I have taught Mandarin and Chinese culture in British and international institutions, including the Vietnam National University Hanoi, the British School of Beijing China (Primary), Stockport Grammar School UK (Secondary) and the Manchester University Confucius Institute. I have enriched my study and practice with my BA in Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language from Guangxi Normal University, China, and MA Educational Leadership from the University of Manchester, UK.
I am thrilled by the opportunities presented to students by the diversity and inclusiveness at Hua Hin International School. I look forward to using my full potential as a Chinese language and culture teacher in this rich and fertile environment. Being a member of the HHIS school community I would love to see the students to be inspired and encouraged, through in-class and extra-curricular activities within and beyond the classroom, to be well-rounded in their learning.
Ms Yun will be teaching Mandarin to Secondary students.
Mr Rick Blakemore
My name is Rick Blakemore and I’m really looking forward to joining the HHIS team. I have a BSc (Hons) degree, PGCE (QTS) and extensive experience in teaching – the last five years as Head of Computing/ICT at a prominent International school in Bangkok and previous to that, as Director of ICT/Computing for 15 years in a school in Jersey, Channel Islands.
Prior to teaching, I was a professional Firefighter in South Yorkshire (UK) for fifteen years and a keen sports player and later, coach. I try my best to use past experiences to form communities within the classroom where students feel valued and connected, hopefully giving them fond memories to look back on as they get older. I enjoy riding British motorbikes, playing golf and getting off the beaten track looking for snakes. With this in mind, I am sure Hua Hin will be the perfect place.
Mr Rick will be teaching Computing/ICT to Secondary students.
Ms Neina Metcalfe
I graduated from Hull University with a BMus (Bachelor of Music) in 2006 and immediately went on to complete my PGCE at The University of Reading in 2007. Since then I have taught in the UK, Malaysia, Jordan and Vietnam. I am excited to move to HHIS and am really looking forward to meeting my new students and being part of the HHIS community.
I am passionate about Music, particularly singing, and believe it to be vital for a well rounded education. I look forward to meeting the young musicians at HHIS and working with them.
I am very much looking forward to sampling lots of delicious Thai food but may well have to build up my spice tolerance!
Ms Neina will be teaching Music across the school.
Ms Gina Harper
I am excited to be a part of the HHIS team as of this year. I am an English teacher with five years of teaching experience across two, different age groups. After graduating in 2013 from the University of Lincoln with a BA in English & Journalism I have taught in the Further Education Sector and have recently been teaching in a school in central Manchester. I have supported the school with projects which aim to improve diversity within the school curriculum as well as developing younger pupils find their voice through the school’s oracy initiative. In addition to my teaching,
I have also worked as an examiner for the last three years and have worked for the National Tutoring Programme back in the UK. I believe English is an amazing subject as it encompasses so much of human nature. The possibility to travel back in time or into a completely different world through people’s stories and experiences is something to be treasured by all age groups.
Ms Gina will be teaching English.
Ms Ali Morakot
I have been a qualified teacher since 2008 and hold a PGCE and BA Hons. Degree in Business. I have lived in Thailand and worked in international schools in Bangkok since 2012 having previously taught in a large sixth form college in the south of England.
I enjoy outdoor pursuits such as hiking, rock climbing and kayaking and have shared this passion for the wilderness with students through the International Award’s ‘Adventurous Journey’. I also enjoy rugby and hope to support a Touch Rugby team here at HHIS.
I am an enthusiastic teacher who is passionate about supporting young people in their learning journey but also in their development as young, confident adults.
Ms Ali will be teaching Business Studies.
Ms Emma Fordham
I’m delighted to be joining the art department at HHIS. My journey to Thailand began in rural Sweden, where I was brought up and acquired my love of art and nature. From Sweden I moved to London to study, completing both a degree in Fine Art and a PGCE in Art and Design. Since then I have taught in London, Shanghai and Hong Kong – three amazing cities with very diverse and rich cultures. I’m looking forward to sharing my years of experience and knowledge of art with the students at HHIS.
I believe that art is not only about acquiring new skills and processes, but also encourages creativity, critical thinking and an understanding and empathy for other people, cultures and beliefs.
In my spare time I continue my own art practice. I also love being outdoors, especially hiking, free-diving and yoga.
Ms Emma will be teaching Art.
In addition to the arrival of our new teachers, I am pleased to welcome Mr David on to the Senior Leadership Team as he takes on the role of IB Coordinator from August.
As vaccinations for some teachers may begin this week and we reflect on our expanding, vibrant team of teachers, there comes a growing feeling of excitement and optimism for the year ahead.
Hua Hin International School