Our Team: Jay Bowyer
Graceland: Where’s home for you?
Jay: Although I’m Canadian born and bred, my home is where my heart is; and that’s in Kraków, Poland; an amazing city of culture and history.
G: Why Krakow?
J: After living in Ciechnanów for 7 years, the people and personality of Kraków really tugged at my heart. I liked the idea of working with energetic people like Tomek and Sabina. I’m a big city girl and I also liked the idea of helping big city people slow down a little, take some time for them, and learn a new language.
G: Do you actually teach people how to speak English?
J: Of course, that’s what I do. I love seeing a person who can’t speak English get to the point of having a conversation, helping someone who does speak English learn the nuances of the language, and build the confidence of someone who just needs to practice with a Native English speaker.
G: And what about God, where does He come into all of this?
J: You know, everything is spiritual whether we care to admit it or not, whether we talk about it or not, so I say: Let’s bring God into our classroom and talk about Him.
G: And do your students like talking about God?
J: Well at first, most of them are a bit leery of the subject, but once they see that we and the other students, who have been here for more than a semester, find it natural to talk about, they open up and jump into the fray. We don’t all see eye to eye, but that’s not why we’re here.
G: So why are you here?
J: Every English school has to choose a text, and we choose portions of the Bible, or Biblical themes as our classroom text. In doing so, we provide a natural environment for people to see that the Bible has something of value for them and a forum for them to be able to talk about it. So, basically we are here to connect people to God through the Bible, to connect people to each other in their community and to connect them to their world through exposure to other cultures, English is a happy by-product of all of that.