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A real man, great teacher and risk-taker – our teacher Mark

What do we get if we mix a perfect man with a risk-taker and a great experienced teacher? That would be Mark S., one of our prominent, enthusiastic and charming teachers. Mark is an American native speaker who is from Los Angeles, California, but currently lives in Ukraine.

I am sure that you are not just interested in the city, where Mark used to live, but also interested in him, so let’s find out more about our mysterious teacher all together. Don’t get stressed if you see a couple of words in Russian among the English sentences, that's because Mark is fond of the Russian language, knows a bit of it and wanted to share his knowledge with us.

So, as usual I’d like to start with the teacher’s knowledge background and professional experience.

– Have you been working as a teacher your whole life?

– Nope, I owned a business in the USA for 7 years, but then the economic crisis made my business unprofitable, so I started searching for other interesting things for me to do. I have always been interested in teaching. Though, I didn’t begin my teacher’s career teaching English, but from teaching people how to surf. I love surfing and by the end of the 1st class each of my students had learnt how to stand up on the board. I knew how to help them stay on the board and prevent them from jumping back into water.

– Wow, how did you manage to do that?

– I told them that I would always be with them and that they could trust me, and always make sure that they are safe. And I was definitely nearby, so they felt relaxed, strong and confident, that’s why they started to surf quickly.

– Do you use these tricks while teaching English also?

– Yep, I always tell students that they can trust me, rely on me and can ask me anything they want. I will always be glad to help them understand what is unclear. I am pretty interactive with students. I try to build relationships with them and make sure they are as passionate as I am. Besides, I am a very patient teacher and realize that the process of studying is really difficult, so students shouldn’t be afraid of making mistakes, because you learn through mistakes. I know this from my own experience, as I also study Russian and often make mistakes while speaking. 

– Did you have any funny or interesting stories with students?

– Yes, I have a teenager among my students who is a musician and he liked me so much as a teacher and as a person that he has written a song called "Real Mark, Real Man".

A Great "чувак" and an awesome husband

Have you ever met a person that has a variety of character features at the same time? Mark is just that kind of person: he is courageous, strong and a risk-taker, but at the same time kind, loving, hilarious and a great professional in the sphere of education. So, girls, if you are reading this article now, you might think that it's not that easy to find such a man, but one girl is already happy to be with this real man.

– Mark, would you please tell how you got acquainted with your wife?

– Well, nobody believes this story... I got acquainted with her through the Internet. This young lady appeared to be from Ukraine. I fell in love with her and couldn’t imagine my life without her. So I came to Ukraine, proposed to her, and now we are married and live together here. Most of the people speak Russian in Nikolaev, and I needed to know at least a little bit of this difficult language too, so I started to study it.

– Do you speak Russian pretty well?

– I know a little bit of Russian, just separate words. My favorite word in Russian is «чувак». I also know all the names of the fruit and vegetables in Russian, so when I go to «магазин» I tell «бабушкас» (shop-assistants) what I want to buy and if I don't know something, I usually call my wife and pass the phone to the assistant, so that my wife can translate everything.

– You are so helpful to your wife, good job!

– Well, I do not only go shopping, but also help my wife to cook. Besides, I miss the food from America so much, I often cook burritos, tacos, scalloped potatoes, and many other American dishes. 

Lover of all types of "Boarding"

While speaking with Mark I realized that he likes all types of "boarding".

His pursuits include: snowboarding, wakeboarding and skateboarding, surfing, as well as motorcycle riding.

– You are fond of rather dangerous sport activities, have you ever broken anything?

– Yes, I broke my ankle last August while skateboarding and walked with a cane like «дедушка» for a certain period of time. But I have almost recovered and I am going to wakeboard this summer. So, I am ready to break my other ankle, – says Mark, chuckling.

We have spoken about active sports, and here are some things which help Mark relax.

Will Ferrell

Michael Anthony Rickman. In Search of Dad



A short video interview with Mark. Enjoy it! 

I would like to finish this article with the favorite motto of our hero "Life is what you make it". I do agree with this statement and I would also like to wish everyone, no matter what happens, to keep trying, hold on and always, always believe in yourself, because if you don't, then who will? So, keep your head high, keep your chin up, and most importantly, keep smiling, because life is a beautiful thing and there's so much to smile about.

Feel English and Feel free

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