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.
It is paradoxical that we need to sit down in order to go somewhere far fast. Be it if we take a train between states or a flight across countries, we sit for the duration of it. If we tried to run or swim there, it would be tiring and/or dangerous. Our safest bet is to stay put, while also moving rapidly.
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.
Ever since I moved to South Korea in 2009 to teach English, I usually get a handful of inquiries every year from new teachers wanting to talk about moving overseas to teach. It’s fun for me—I love re-living my international adventure with prospective ESL teachers, and getting excited vicariously.
Will our isolation increase through the infinite freedom of information and ubiquity of the Internet? Longer summers and lesser days / school year are the remains of the US agrarian economy, when planting picking and harvesting took place in a greater number of homesteads than today. US schools continue to have fewer days... and if well charted and scheduled, this freedom fosters creativity.
Going home after teaching English abroad can be pretty intimidating, especially the job part of it. If you don’t want to teach ESL in your home country, what exactly can you do for work? In order to see what people were actually doing, I surveyed 55 old friends and random Internet strangers to find out all the details for you (and myself as well!).
In my last article I covered how to write a resume for teaching English abroad. This week I’d like to cover some conventional and non-conventional job seeking strategies you can employ to help you find a great job teaching abroad. Many of these same strategies are also applicable to the domestic, non-teaching job market as well.
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.