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Teahing abroad?

Travel Forums General Talk Teahing abroad?

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1. Posted by Kris1013 (Budding Member, 12 posts) 27 Feb '07 08:58

Hello everyone! Has anyone here had any experience with teaching abroad? Where did you go and what was the experience like?

Thanks!
Kris

2. Posted by Bokkie20 (Budding Member, 22 posts) 27 Feb '07 12:12

I tried to teach in NZ. The system sucks and I still get a bit upset when I think about it.

Wnna know more? (long story to tell)

3. Posted by Kris1013 (Budding Member, 12 posts) 27 Feb '07 12:17

Sorry you didn't have a good experience, especially in a place where I would expect there to be a good infrastructure for foreigners to teach. Specifically I am thinking of teaching abroad in a developing country in order to save money and pay off student loans.

What sucked about NZ?

Kris

4. Posted by samsara_ (Travel Guru, 5322 posts) 27 Feb '07 13:29

I taught business English to upper management in Santiago. It was a great experience! :) I only did it for a couple of months because it wasnt really very well paid and wasnt enough to sustain me living in Santiago.

Started with one of the many English institutes in the city. They gave me a brief interview, some pointers on teaching and a coursebook and then just threw me in at the deep end!
I had to travel to a factory way outside the city for my first contract. It was pretty scary for the first day or two! :) I had three male students who were hilarious and we had great fun in the lessons.
My second contract was teaching a young professional in a city centre office in the evenings. Male again.
And the third was in the institute itself in the evenings teaching a class of students.

It can be a bit nervewracking standing up in front of a class for the first time, but it ended up being great fun. I really looked forward to most lessons.

Depending on how confident you feel, you dont have to do very much preparation for these classes. Coursebooks are given as a rough guideline for what topics to cover, but the classes really just end up being a discussion and doing role plays. :)

For me, it was an enriching experience and a way of really interacting with Chilean professionals. It defintiely wasnt a money-spinner, but it did help to stretch my travel fund.

Hope that gives you some idea of what to expect/ :)

5. Posted by jekalo (Full Member, 118 posts) 27 Feb '07 18:05

Hi Kris,
Before I get to my experiences, what are your qualifications and what are you wanting to teach? These two things will make a world of difference in where you can go and what you will be able to earn. If you are certified to teach english, there are loads of opportunities in the far East and Eastern Europe. If you are certified from a university to teach in public or private schools as a generalist or a specific area such as math, science and so on, you have a great opportunity to not only travel to virtualy any country in the world but also be paid a good wage in most of them.
My wife and I are both certified teachers and have taught in public and private schools in the U.S., Nigeria, Saudi Arabia and now Myanmar. All of our experiences have been good and we have loved getting to know the culture in all of these places as well as making life long friends whom we visit as we return home during periods of extended holiday time. China is the hottest market for teachers and right now there are more jobs than applicants at all the job fairs for teachers. A lot of the schools in China also give a nice package that includes housing, insurance and travel benefits. In most places in the East and Africa, you can save a large percentage of your pay for travel or whatever else you want to save for. South America generaly has lower paying posts but the cost of living is low but a lot of countries there also have a steep tax on income. Europe is tough because a lot of people want to teach there and the pay is not high enough to offset the high cost of living and many countries also tax you to death there.
I wish I had started the overseas teaching much earlier in my career as it has been great for us and our children as well. It is an eye opener as far as seeing how slanted the media is and as a result, how biased a lot of people are because of what the read and hear. Living in different places gives you a much better picture of the world than reading about places or seeing them on the news or documentaries. You have to remember that there is always an agenda of some kind attached to the things you see and read about in the mass media.
More than you wanted to know perhaps but if you would like to know more, I would be glad to give you more specific information. Its a great way to live.

6. Posted by meli1984 (Full Member, 6 posts) 27 Feb '07 23:47

hi there..

I have just finished a 4 month contract teaching in Bangkok. I have a degree (a prerequisite for teaching in Thailand but you can get around that) and a TEFL certificate which I did here in Thailand. With those two things getting a job in Thailand is ridiculously easy. The money is plenty to live on here but not much in terms of money back home! Still, me and my boyfriend live a very good life here!!! So you should definitely consider Thailand as work is easy to find and the country is beautiful and interesting..

But a word of warning: living in Bangkok is not for everyone.. Many teachers are middle-aged men who didnt come here for the culture so you may not have that much in common with everyone you work with.. but there are quite a few teacher/travellers like me.. there would be more of "us" up North or anywhere away from Bangkok but the pay is less (but the cost of living is even lower) and there may not be many westerners around (but you might like that. Personally love big bustly Bangkok and all the crazy and new things it has to offer.. but wouldn't choose to live here permanently, probably not more than a year at most.

If I have scared you off Thailand (I didn't mean to!!) and you are looking to pay off debts while you teach I suggest you try Korea. Pays good and cost of living is low (except for accomodation but most places pay for that for you).. and most Korean schools will pay for your flights too. I have freidns who saved up to 1000 US dollars a MONTH there. But if you consider korea remember there arent many foreigners there so you might get a little lonely!

Hope this helps!!

Melissa

7. Posted by Kris1013 (Budding Member, 12 posts) 28 Feb '07 11:16

The only qualifications that I have at this point is a BS. Is this enough to get started? I am considering getting TEFL/TESOL certified but I am trying to gather info about what the daily routine is like and how teaching abroad is different than teaching domestically.
How many hours per week does one work or does this vary from place to place? What about time off? Are there summer holidays like in the states?

Thanks!
Kris ;)

8. Posted by Ahila (Respected Member, 1529 posts) 3 Mar '07 03:11

I think you would require a teaching certificate if you want to teach abroad. Especially if you are looking for a salary high enough to enable you to save. Experience is a requisite when you apply from another country. Sometimes the easier way is to go to a country and then go and visit some schools and hand in your CV and you might be called for an interview. I did that during a gap year in Stockholm and I must say the salary is usually only sufficient for covering living expenses.

I think you have more chances if you are TEFL/TESOL certified as it is a qualification that is most popular amongst international schools.

Also, programmes like VSO have teaching programmes in developing countries. There again, what you earn will be enough for your living but not for saving up.

I would advice that you apply for teaching abroad only if you are looking for a new experience in a different country, rather than for earning money. If money is your primary concern, you would definitely need to have more teaching experience.

9. Posted by rubens (Budding Member, 35 posts) 3 Mar '07 06:34

I have listen about many experiences from people teaching english here in Mexico, maybe you can come here, Riviera Maya and Guadalajara are good places for do that

10. Posted by madpoet (Respected Member, 409 posts) 3 Mar '07 06:48

You don't need anything more than a Bachelor's degree to teach in most parts of East Asia (although there are more opportunities and better pay if you have ESL qualifications). I'm now teaching in China, and I've also taught in South Korea. I have a teaching certificate now, but I didn't when I started.
If you want to earn a lot of money, try South Korea. I was saving over $2,000 (U.S.) every month when I worked there. In China, I'm lucky if I can save $500/month. But China is more fun, and there's so much more to see here. And travel within China is cheap: you can travel across China by train for less than $100 (hard sleeper).