HeyMath! Consultant: Daniel
HeyMath! is just the ideal company to introduce you mildly into the world of career building.
Everyone at the office is very friendly and treats you from the first day as if you have known them for years. This is important, as you never work alone on a project. I constantly interact with my team members to clarify my thoughts, share ideas and discuss each and every bit of the work until everyone is happy with the outcome. Indeed, there is a lot of teamwork involved and you learn quickly not to be shy.
I can manage my own time, with no one standing behind my back and checking on me every minute. Yet, there are still deadlines to meet and plenty of work to do.
I started work on the first day I arrived here, and before I knew it, I was involved in tons of different projects. This is the other great thing about HeyMath!: the work never gets boring, as there is so much stuff you can take up, and the extent to which you get involved in only depends on you. For one project, you might choose to just stick to quality checking other people's work in some projects, yet with others, you might decide to take (almost) complete control. For others, you might let loose your creativity and turn the project upside down to suit your imagination (as long as it appeals to the others).
Just a few the things I was (and will be) doing in the past months:
- Creating lessons for American and Indian high schools. This means writing a script for the lesson, which involves: coming up with good ways of introducing a new topic in maths that students would easily comprehend. Coming up with a good storyline for the lesson, involving cool animations, so that the students would actually enjoy watching the lesson. After you are done with the script, an animator will create my lesson in flash, and I have to make sure he interprets my thoughts correctly and follow his work step by step. Once the lesson is animated, I receive tons of comments from other people on my team on how to make the lesson better, and I implement these.
- Designing interesting posters for classroom walls to stimulate students' interest in maths.
- Editing the HeyMath! page published in The Hindu, a newspaper read throughout South India. My team decides about the content, anything from brainteasers to history of mathematics, which advertises HeyMath! among the younger age group.
And so on and so on... The choices are endless; you just have to grab them.
Coming to India from Europe, the first few days feel like you have landed on Mars. It's because of this huge cultural shock that living here is so interesting. Going on a hunt to find origami paper, or walking home during the rainy season when all the streets are flooded can be quite an adventure on their own.
The cost of travel is extremely cheap compared to our salary, including train tickets, food and accommodation. Conaill, Ben and I have spent most of our free time traveling throughout South India. Taking 14 hour long train rides, walking on the white sand of blissful beaches, riding a horse in the middle of tea plantations or seeing thousand year old Hindu temples are experiences you can only encounter if you come here.
There is loads of stuff to do in Chennai as well; you just have to look a bit harder. Alcohol is relatively expensive and inaccessible, but you can easily get high class entertainment, such as: learning a foreign language (Tamil, French, German, Russian...), teaching origami to kids, playing football on the beach or partying on rooftops with the other expats.
Here are some prices to compare your 20 000 Rupees monthly salary to:
- Monthly bills (electricity, internet): Rs 2000.
- Annual gym membership: Rs 11500.
- A meal in a cheap restaurant: Rs 60. Average restaurant: Rs 150. Expensive restaurant: Rs 300-400.
- 1 liter of milk: Rs 37. 1 box of cereal: Rs 130. 1 kg of banana: Rs 25.
- A rickshaw ride to work: Rs 30. Otherwise it's a 20 minute walk.
- Second class sleeper train ticket to Kerala, one way: Rs 400.
- 1 bottle of beer: Rs 70 (at a wine shop), Rs 200 (at a cheaper hotel bar).
Overall, if you want a change from your life in Cambridge, to spend a year you will always remember and want a thrilling, but stress free job, you should apply now!