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Getting a Job Teaching English Overseas

Discuss working and making a living overseas, starting a business, or studying abroad.

Moderators: jamesbond, fschmidt

Postby globetrotter » Sun Dec 20, 2009 9:54 am

Tj;

That ESL teacher is a dangerous combination of youth, inexperience and cynicism. If you are a hot 25 year old Polish girl, yeah you can get a job in Manhattan and pull 20k for 6 months savings of waitress tips. Not so much if you are an average 30 yo guy or a 48 yo semi-retired controller. His stories ALL consist of going out to a bar getting drunk and then teachng hung over the next day.

Would he do the same at his 9-5 UK/US/EU job? No he wouldn't.

That is the life of a stunted adolescent. If he wants to teach EFL seriously he gets the CELTA/DELTA/DipTesol and maybe an MA in TEFL/TESOL. Then he earns 20k to 60 k a year. Or instead of teaching at a mill he works privates in a major city and pulls down real money. Imagine earning 20kRMB per month in a country where it costs 2k to live. No taxes in either country.
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Postby FuzzX » Sat Mar 13, 2010 2:27 pm

I taught english for 5 years (Mexico, Japan, Brazil, Korea).

I have no degree

I have a TESOL certificate and I failed the CELTA twice (should have kept my mouth shut about feminism)

anyway you don't need a degree and you don't really even need a certificate in most cases. HOWEVER be aware that Japan and the rest of the 1st world countries are filled with woman's lib teachers and graduates of completely useless degrees who are bitter towards 1st world men.

My best advice is to throw $10,000 in the bank, go over and get setup for a month or two and then look for a job. Also take the TESOL certificate at www.globaltesol.com <-- that's where I took mine, and only an idiot can fail that course. To pass the CELTA you MUST be politically correct and teach without showing any interest in the female sex... if you are gay or a visible minority then you are probably a shoe in.

As you can see you don't even have to be a grammar expert because 90% of language learning takes place just by speaking and listening. Don't believe me? How did you learn your English? I guarntee you didn't learn by studying grammatical forumlas in school. You listened to your mom and dad speak and you repeated over and over until you got it...

I speak Spanish and Portugues and can imitate the accents to a tee... I've never taken a class in my life... how did that happen?

For a dose of reality check this site www.englishteacherx.com
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Postby globetrotter » Sat Mar 13, 2010 3:05 pm

FuzzX wrote:I have a TESOL certificate and I failed the CELTA twice (should have kept my mouth shut about feminism)

My best advice is to throw $10,000 in the bank, go over and get setup for a month or two and then look for a job. Also take the TESOL certificate at www.globaltesol.com <-- that's where I took mine, and only an idiot can fail that course. To pass the CELTA you MUST be politically correct and teach without showing any interest in the female sex... if you are gay or a visible minority then you are probably a shoe in.


Truth. I figured this out on Day 1 of my CELTA.

One exchange with one of my proctors went thusly:

She has graded one of my lesson plans poorly. I made a comment in one about a student whose L2 was horrible and he refused to speak. I mentioned that based upon his interactions with his friends that he seems intelligent.

After trying to figure out WTF she red marked the above sentence for, she tells me:

"All of our learners are intelligent. That is inappropriate."

I was furious, and having survived HR and corporate bullshite I knew exactly what she meant. I redacted the sentence, shut my mouth, and passed and got my cert. You cannot attempt to date any women there, but they can hit on you. Women can make shit comments, but you better be a good little beta mangina and keep your mouth shut.

Going from being the boss to being a lowly teacher trainee was difficult and there were some conflicts.

Any comments on Feminism will get you on their shit list quickly. Probably not a good idea...
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Postby FuzzX » Sun Mar 28, 2010 9:45 am

Your best bet is to have some money in the bank before you go over and teach, that way if you find out that you hate your job or your co workers are manginas, you can just quit. I've run into a few crappy situations with other teachers where I quit within a month of starting the job and had to find a quick way home or some other method of supporting myself.

Learn from my mistakes, have money in the bank before you attempt any job in ESL... I would say at least $10,000.
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Postby globetrotter » Sun Mar 28, 2010 2:57 pm

FuzzX wrote:Your best bet is to have some money in the bank before you go over and teach, that way if you find out that you hate your job or your co workers are manginas, you can just quit. I've run into a few crappy situations with other teachers where I quit within a month of starting the job and had to find a quick way home or some other method of supporting myself.

Learn from my mistakes, have money in the bank before you attempt any job in ESL... I would say at least $10,000.


Nah. $2,000 is enough. You want enough money to be able to pay your way for a month ($200) and be able to buy a one way ticket back with cash. That is $400 to $1000. Add in $600 for spending money and $2,000 is enough.
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Postby FuzzX » Sun Mar 28, 2010 3:59 pm

$2000 is usually plenty if you know your stuff and have a contact wherever you are going. I've been here in Canada too long.
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Postby SuzyLeme » Fri Sep 23, 2011 6:05 am

How did you all find great teacher jobs exactly? Was it hard?
I have been considering going to another country to teach, but I really cannot seem to find the right position. I have a small family, so I can't see myself moving there unless I have a guaranteed job. I don't want to move my family around unless there is stability. So, do you all have any suggestions on where the best jobs overseas are and how I can get them? Thanks so much!!!

Suzy :D
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Postby Maker55 » Sat Jan 21, 2012 11:22 pm

I got my TESOL in 2011 and have already submitted my application to go teach in Japan in the Jet Program starting in August 2012. My application is being processed and am awaiting their decision. You have to have a Bachelor's Degree in any field to teach in Japan.
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Postby Cornfed » Fri Aug 17, 2012 5:05 am

Personally I think it is time to stop flogging the EFL dead horse and come up with new ways to earn a living overseas. The problems with teaching English are fairly obvious - a massive surplus of would-be teachers due to the huge numbers of over educated and underemployed people in the West, declining funds available in Asia for English instruction, competition from competent local teachers and technological means of teaching, the fact that fewer people want to learn the language of loser societies circling the drain etc. Even if you do find a position, pay and conditions aren't going anywhere but down, and Western teachers are now widely regarded as disposable cheap migrant labour - "the Mexicans of Asia" - and treated like garbage on that basis.
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Postby Jester » Sat Aug 18, 2012 6:14 am

Maker55 wrote:I got my TESOL in 2011 and have already submitted my application to go teach in Japan in the Jet Program starting in August 2012. My application is being processed and am awaiting their decision. You have to have a Bachelor's Degree in any field to teach in Japan.


Congrats. If I was under 30 I would do this, in Japan, without hesitation.*

I suspect that once you are legal in Japan, with address and local bank account, then staying in Japan longterm via online income will also be an option.



(*Not that I like schoolgirls or anything.)
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Postby expatasiaseeker » Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:35 am

tjh14 wrote:I teach English for a living, and it is not an easy gig in many situations. Don't let the TEFL certificate providers and schools sell you a pipe dream. They are only interested in making money. There is a high turnover and failure rate and they need an endless stream of fresh meat. Unless you have a quality certificate, a CELTA or TESOL with 120 hours of training and supervised teaching, your certificate is invalid at the better schools. Online or 1 week courses are a waste of time. Whether or not a 4 year degree is required depends on the country. The days of anyone who can speak English getting a job are fading fast.
I would not recommend teaching illegally in any country, because you have no rights and there are many unscrupulous schools out there who will simply rip you off, pay you partial wages or not at all. And if you are working illegally, what are you going to do about it? Nothing, that's what. You are just like some Mexican who has crossed the border for work and you have no rights at all.
In the 90's it was possible to show up in almost any country and find a job. It may still be that way in South America and a few other places(Ukraine is one), but if you aren't qualified to meet the standards for working legally in a country, you are going to be taken advantage of at some point. Unlikely you can get a high paying job in Japan without a degree and a cert.

That said, a lot of people do it and don't seem to mind going for visa runs every 3 months or so. But this will get old sooner or later.

Here is a not so rosy evaluation of the TEFL industry, which is a extremely negative. It's not that bad. The reality lies somewhere between this article and the glamorous lifestyle promised by the TEFL industry.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/educationnews/3325192/The-slavery-of-teaching-English.html

But here are two articles which are pretty much spot on.

http://www.skateforfun.com/englishteacherx/backup/page30.html
http://www.skateforfun.com/englishteacherx/backup/page45.html


Am I trying to discourage people? No. But I suggest you do your homework and prepare yourself. I have seen some real horror stories, and lived through one. My first job was in Kiev, at a good school. But the economy collapsed in October, the currency devalued 50% and business dried up. Since I was the new guy, I was out in the street. Other schools there were shedding teachers also, so I fled to China where I have a good situation. But if I hadn't had a degree and a CELTA, and some savings, I might have been screwed. It was scary.
Another thing. Many women expect foreign men to be well off. I have had women really like me until they found out I was an English teacher. I had one promising lady actually flinch, and then get up an leave in Kiev. It's not a chick magnet being an English teacher. But not all girls feel that way.
The only countries that pay well are in Asia and the Middle East. And Americans can't work in EU countries legally.
But I am having a good time and it has been the adventure of a lifetime. Don't get into this for the money, though. You will most likely be disappointed. There have been times when I thought I was crazy for having done this.


Pretty disgusting how materialistic and shallow a lot of the Ukraine bitches are. It's like all they care about is money. Frankly, that's why I don't even bother with white women and only go for Asian girls. At least Asian women still act like women and are humble and submissive. I can't f***ing stand white women, whether they are north american, european, or east european.
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Postby Bao3niang » Thu Apr 10, 2014 11:55 am

So far I know TEFL, TESOL, CELTA, and DELTA. Apparently TEFL is seen as "babyish" and not accepted by many English schools in Asia anymore. I've heard TESOL and CELTA are what you need. I will be going to Canada for university, so I guess I will go with TESOL.

I've also heard that certificates from online TEFL/TESOL courses aren't valid in many places. Looking on quite a few ESL teaching websites, it appears that a good TESOL course needs to have the following:

-It must be at least 120 hours long

-It must have a good classroom component

One of these websites say that the courses which land you guaranteed jobs upon completion often send you to the most crappy places with low pay and poor working conditions.


Generating an online income isn't possible for everyone, and unless you are already rich or very successful in your career, I guess teaching English is still the best way to going abroad. It won't give you a top/superb quality of life, but enough to live decently or just normally.

This is all the information I have so far, and I need far more tips/advice from you experienced ESL teachers that are teaching abroad. I speak English with native fluency but that doesn't change my fully Chinese ethnicity. I know it might hurt my chances in certain places, but if zboy has done it, why can't I give a shot?

I'm currently trying to gain experience by doing one-on-one tutoring with a 9-year old boy who goes to a local school. He's been learning English since the age of 3 (aye.... aye.... aye.....), and his parents want him to take the Cambridge KET. Might be a daunting task for me as being a native speaker I've never taken a standardized English test, let alone tutor someone else on it.

I've failed almost all my grammar tests in English test throughout my mental prison career (AKA formal education). Even now I get confused between adjective, adverb, etc. What the heck is present simple? Present perfect?



P.S. What do you guys think of my written English?
CYKA BLYAT!!!!!!
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Postby xiongmao » Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:02 pm

Get a CELTA, but before you do, get the recommended reading list books. I've got two of them and they're good, but it's very hard stuff if you're a native English speaker and learned English from your mom, not from a text book.

There's a foreign guy in my house, and I've been sneakily reading his TEFL books. It's tough stuff indeed.

The good news is that in China you don't need to know any of this. You're employed to talk. But the CELTA will take some effort to achieve.
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Re: Getting a Job Teaching English Overseas

Postby IraqVet2003 » Mon Aug 03, 2015 4:32 am

Hello, my fellow H.A. members!!!! I have found an interesting website that list the best countries to teach English abroad.

The Best Countries to Teach English in 2015/Jimmy ESL

1.) China

2.) South Korea

3.) Colombia

4.) Vietnam

5.) Japan

6.) Taiwan

7.) Ecuador

8.) Chile

9.) Saudi Arabia

10.) Thailand

Here's the link: http://jimmyesl.com/teach-english-abroad/the-best-countries-to-teach-in-2015
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Re: Getting a Job Teaching English Overseas

Postby MrMan » Mon Aug 03, 2015 8:11 am

There were a couple of good ESL resources that I could have told you the name of 10 years ago when I was teaching English. One was an American grammar book, I think by Betsy Adar. I can't remember the British book that had the same sort of thing, but had both British and American English. I think I like that one better. I was okay in grammar, so that part didn't bother too much when I was teaching.

In S. Korea, it used to be that you could get a job teaching English if you had a degree. I suspect that may still be the case. They had a lot of little institutes for math, English, etc. that high school students went to after school. Businessmen and college students would also go to English school. It's a really big industry there.

In that last post, why would China be the top country? I'm getting an error message when I click the link. Don't they still pay only a few hundred a month, or maybe up to $1000 or $1200? Korea was paying about $1800 to $2000. That's probably a pretty good deal for a single fresh college grad who'd be working part-time at McDonald's back in the US. If you don't spend a lot of money on drinking and other things, you can probably save quite a bit. I made $1600 a month in the mid-1990's, so salaries have probably gone down in real terms, including inflation. I saved about $6000 that year, paid off the college loans in my name and bought a used car with it. That was from one year of work. I worked part-time, and then went to Indonesia after about 10 months in the US with nothing much happening career-wise.

If you want to teach overseas and you are in college, you can get a major in education, get certified in your home country and then work for a much higher rate of pay as a school teacher. It's a real job with a lot more hours, but you'd get paid more. Of course, some people do under the table classes in Korea or elsewhere and make decent money that way.
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