There are two truths I’ve discovered about the teaching profession: you can leave the profession but it will never leave you, and it’s exhausting work. However, these truths are not necessarily self-evident. First, while you may be able to leave teaching (physically), as cheesy as it may sound, the work gets into your heart and soul.
One of the most common questions teachers and those who aspire to teach abroad ask, or more likely debate ad infinitum on obscure internet forums, is whether it is better to apply directly to schools or to use the services of a recruiting company to obtain gainful employment teaching abroad.
Teaching English is the perfect way to travel, learn about other cultures, and to serve other people. However, the age-old dilemma for all future English teachers is: do you pay for an expensive CELTA certification or go for a usually-less-expensive TESL or TEFL course? The answer really depends on your specific situation.
I often hear other expats saying that these type of holidays are always the most difficult when you find yourself all alone in a foreign country. Not only are you alone but you also do not understand the local language and the way they celebrate holidays is vastly different to what you are used to back home.
(1) The bus stop in the village where two of my travel schools are, is right in front of the little cigarette store where we buy our bus tickets. Today it started snowing and I joined the ajumma’s and ajeossi’s huddling against the wind and the cold in front of the store.
I teach at four different schools; two elementary and two middle schools. The English levels are pretty low being in the rural areas and not having had many NET's to date. Also, I have one day per week with my kids because they have a Korean English teacher on the days that I am not there.
I knew an expat teacher who lived in the same rural town as I did. She lived just across from her school and was there about six months longer than I had been at the time. One evening we went out for dinner and afterwards decided to grab a beer. We went to a bar where she had never been before and on our way there we passed the Arts and Culture Centre. She asked: "What is this?" I was stunned.