Pathways To Learning... Since 2005
Hong Kong Registered School 566985

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Akin Jeje

English Teacher

Qualifications :

M.A., B.Ed.

Subjects :



Akin works at ITS part-time because he is a full-time NET (Native English Teacher) for the EDB (since 2005). He is responsible for the creation of reading, writing and oral/speaking lesson resources, as well as language instruction; he conducts workshops for fellow teachers and students. He has always tutored extensively part-time, as an independent tutor and for various centres. His specialty subjects are English Language, English Literature, History, Poetry and Creative Writing, although he is also qualified to teach Sociology and General Studies.

He has published two poetry collections and numerous individual poems and articles in Hong Kong, Canada , the United States, Singapore, the United Kingdom and Australia. He is one of three directors for Peel Street Poetry, a Hong Kong based English-language poetry collective present in Hong Kong for 13 years. He has served as an advisor and moderator for the Hong Kong International Literary Festival from 2012-2016.

On becoming a teacher:

I became a primary school teacher specifically because I wanted to be able to encourage in younger students a love of learning, and to help facilitate authentic learning that would help them not only function in their present academic environment but imbue a curiosity for learning to allow them to connect with a wider world. I had been a graduate student of literature previously, but I felt it was more useful to reach a broader group of students rather than ones already more privileged by the academy. I mostly enjoy imparting and sharing knowledge with students, in order to broaden their horizons. Teaching students and providing them with guidance and support is an invaluable service. Observing them engage meaningfully in their learning in the classroom and beyond is a joy.

Other interests that reflect on my personality as a teacher:

As outlined earlier, I’m deeply involved in Hong Kong’s literary scene as a poet, writer, moderator and workshop coordinator. My various roles enable me to empower others to enjoy and even learn to use literary and narrative skills towards self-expression. In these roles, I continue to be an educator.

People I find inspirational and why:

In terms of the educational field, there are several educators that I admire; E.R. Braithwaite, Jaime Escalante, Joe Clark, Marva Collins, Ken Carter and Erin Gruwell. The commonality among these famous teachers is that not only did they believe that every last child is teachable, their tenacity and dedication to their students produced excellent results by empowering and encouraging students to reach their fullest potentials. While some of their methods may be deemed controversial, their examples of steadfastness, creativity, innovation and integrity have provided educators around the world with strong role models.

As for the literary world, there are numerous authors, writers and poets that I admire, from James Clavell and James Michener, through Langston Hughes and Leopold Senghor, to Barbara Kingsolver, Margaret Atwood and Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. To be brief, it is their vivid, compassionate and exacting portrayals of our world past, present and future that I find inspirational and insightful.

While there are many figures, famous and ordinary that I find inspirational, I would say in my personal life the most inspirational figure I know is my father. He graduated high school with honours at the age of 15 in Nigeria, then won full scholarships to Purdue University and MIT in the United States. He graduated magna cum laude in the field of chemical and petroleum engineering, earning his Ph.D at the age of 23. A passionate idealist, we returned to Nigeria so that he would be able to contribute to the country, but politics intruded, and we ended up moving to Canada when I was 8.

Dad nevertheless distinguished himself as a full professor of chemical and petroleum engineering, and also served as a community leader and organiser for local Nigerian and African organisations. He is also a caring and dedicated father and grandfather, and he is well-respected in academic, professional and community development circles. He is my first and most enduring role model.

Top tip to younger self:

If I could go back in time, the most important piece of advice I would give myself is to pursue my dreams by focusing and following through each and every time. When I was younger, I wasn’t entirely sure of myself. There were objectives that I had ventured upon, but didn’t follow through, since I lacked confidence. Later, I began to pursue my ambitions more seriously, and realised more of my goals, but I feel if I was able to encourage my younger self, I would have achieved much more in life. However, I have achieved a good measure, and I still push forth with achieving my goals.


Dulwich College Singapore

Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration.

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