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Teach in developed or developing country?

 
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mortilap



Joined: 29 Sep 2013
Posts: 14

PostPosted: Sun Dec 22, 2013 7:00 pm    Post subject: Teach in developed or developing country? Reply with quote

Hey all,

I'm having trouble deciding if I should try to teach in a developed (ex: Spain, South Korea, etc) or developing (ex: South America, Thailand, China, etc) country. What are the pros/cons of each?

Some of my criteria:

-I don't want to be working 40 hours a week
-I don't want to be immersed in a superficial/materialistic culture (ex: I've heard South Korea is like this. I grew up outside New York City so I really want to get away from the materialism and superficiality)

Thanks!
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Sashadroogie



Joined: 17 Apr 2007
Posts: 8928
Location: Moskva, The Workers' Paradise

PostPosted: Sun Dec 22, 2013 7:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Come to Russia! The most progressive country in the world. A higher level of soulfulness, AND dialectical materialism too. Best of all possible worlds right there.

But if you are swayed more by the bourgeois superficialities of a country such as Spain, it would be better for you to check out relevant work visa restrictions more than your stated criteria.

Best of luck!
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nomad soul



Joined: 31 Jan 2010
Posts: 3614
Location: Terra firma

PostPosted: Sun Dec 22, 2013 8:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mortilap wrote:
Some of my criteria:

-I don't want to be working 40 hours a week
-I don't want to be immersed in a superficial/materialistic culture (ex: I've heard South Korea is like this. I grew up outside New York City so I really want to get away from the materialism and superficiality)

Is that your major criteria? It just seems like an odd list. Anyway, on your first point, you assume every teaching situation in X country entails a mandatory 40-hour work week. That's unrealistic since it's the employer, not the country, that dictates the number of work hours (within the law). As such, some employers expect a full work week, while others only pay for the hours taught. You'd have to determine which scenario would fit your salary expectations once you start viewing and responding to job ads. As for your second point, you didn't give any examples of your issues with "superficial/materialistic" cultures, but in terms of avoiding such situations, simply don't participate or get caught up in aspects of other cultures you find repugnant. Seriously.
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Teacher in Rome



Joined: 09 Jul 2003
Posts: 1207

PostPosted: Sun Dec 22, 2013 10:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dunno Nomad Soul. They sound quite reasonable criteria to me, but I remember vetoing career choices on the basis of whether I'd have to wear a suit...

@Mortilap - just bear in mind that the majority of the world would prefer "NYC " to "paddy field". Even in relatively developed Italy, people learn English to get on / to escape a life of drudgery in dead-end and low-paid jobs. Materialism and superficiality look pretty good if you currently have to struggle to put food on the table... (As I'm sure you're aware.)

Don't believe Sasha for a moment. Those ex-commies have embraced capitalism quicker than it takes to say "glasnost" and "perestroika". The fastest growing new rich are our old friends those Russians... (The swankiest Italian resorts are heaving with them!)

But back to your question. Have you thought about volunteering posts? VSO is a UK organisation which will give you two years in a developing country. You need quals and you get the opportunity to contribute to a developing nation. Lots of transferable skills too - definitely look into it.
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Sashadroogie



Joined: 17 Apr 2007
Posts: 8928
Location: Moskva, The Workers' Paradise

PostPosted: Mon Dec 23, 2013 5:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ah, TiR, don't be taken in by our cunning plan to fool the decadent West. All those supposedly rich Russians on holiday are merely KGB operatives planted there to give the impression of change in the Motherland. But in reality, nothing has changed. If you look closely, you'll notice that the males still wear pointy shoes, and the females have a penchant for fake leopard-skin everything. Behind this collective uniform beats a Slavic heart bursting with Socialist ardour and soul.

So, Russia remains what it has always been, and remains a very good destination for TEFLers in search of a higher purpose...
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PC Parrot



Joined: 11 Dec 2009
Posts: 374
Location: Moral Police Station

PostPosted: Wed Dec 25, 2013 6:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

To avoid materialism, may I suggest you try working on Mars?

The only places in the world where materialism is not evident are places that suffer from extreme poverty. But do not be mistaken into thinking that because materialism is not evident in these places, the desire for materialism does not exist in these places. The same people would jump at the chance of material wealth.

'But what about India & Nepal?' you say. What about them? Do you know how many people from such countries suffer the most horrible indignities to earn a bare crust in the Arabian Gulf?

They are not there to enhance their lives in any other way than in a financial way.

Like others have said, it is up to the individual to choose how materialistic he/she wants to be.
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smithrn1983



Joined: 23 Jul 2010
Posts: 320
Location: Moscow

PostPosted: Thu Dec 26, 2013 7:24 am    Post subject: Re: Teach in developed or developing country? Reply with quote

mortilap wrote:
Hey all,

I'm having trouble deciding if I should try to teach in a developed (ex: Spain, South Korea, etc) or developing (ex: South America, Thailand, China, etc) country. What are the pros/cons of each?


The dividing line between developed and developing country is really quite blurry. Ignoring the fact that most economists don't consider China to be a developing country anymore, most of the places with teaching jobs are in highly developed areas. I've only seen Beijing, but I'm guessing Shanhai, Shenzhen and Guangzhou are also eerily reminiscent of developed, capitalist monuments to be found in the decadent West, as comrade Sasha would put it.

mortilap wrote:

-I don't want to be immersed in a superficial/materialistic culture (ex: I've heard South Korea is like this. I grew up outside New York City so I really want to get away from the materialism and superficiality)


Umm...I would suggest a monastery? What DO you want? This can help us narrow down your list of countries quite a bit more. Are you looking for rugged, hearty types building a utopia in the frozen hinterlands? Follow comrade Sasha's advice and head for Mother Russia. Looking for a relaxing life on the beach? Try Vietnam or Thailand. I think the first step is to figure out what you do want, and then work from there.
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fladude



Joined: 02 Feb 2009
Posts: 432

PostPosted: Thu Dec 26, 2013 12:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are plenty of extremely low paying jobs in rural areas of Latin America that should fit your bill. While Latins, in general are as materialistic as anyone else, if you are out in the country in a very poor place then the materialism will be less. Unfortunately, the salary will be bad.
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Lack



Joined: 10 Aug 2011
Posts: 91

PostPosted: Wed Jan 01, 2014 8:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

OP, I would say first don't make the mistake of assuming developing means it won't be that way. China is a developing country and it is very materialistic and shallow. I don't like it, and am ready to go. I would think Europe would seem less materialistic by comparison even though it is developed. But I haven't been there.
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golsa



Joined: 20 Nov 2011
Posts: 167

PostPosted: Sat Jan 04, 2014 1:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lack wrote:
OP, I would say first don't make the mistake of assuming developing means it won't be that way. China is a developing country and it is very materialistic and shallow. I don't like it, and am ready to go. I would think Europe would seem less materialistic by comparison even though it is developed. But I haven't been there.


+1 x 100
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