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To teach or not to teach

 
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No Moss



Joined: 15 Apr 2003
Posts: 1995
Location: Thailand

PostPosted: Wed Apr 25, 2012 12:31 pm    Post subject: To teach or not to teach Reply with quote

Hi, everybody. No Moss here with advice, not questions!

I'm old now, retired and living in Thailand. Enjoying myself and still teachin' a bit here and there. I always loved to teach, and I have taught in Asia for 12 years now.

Here are a few suggestions on how to look at teaching English abroad assuming that you are a native speaker with a university degree and perhaps a TEFL cert but without a degree in teaching or TESOL.

How much money do you need to make? If you need to make a lot of money, you've reduced your choices to a few countries, and sometimes to a few cities within those countries. Korea, China, Vietnam, Vietnam, Russia (major cities), the Middle East, and a few countries in South America (Colombia and Chile, make that Santiago and Bogota). If you just need to make living expenses, most places will do. Pick a spot, and you can probably find a way to teach there.

What's the visa situation like? Some places make it very easy, others make it hard (Indonesia is tough these days, I hear). There are usually a few ways to skin the cat, especially if you want to do just privates, or are willing to work under the table.

Do you like to teach? If you do, you'll prosper. Teaching English ain't rocket science, although there are things you'll need to know that you don't know now (what's a phrasal verb? what's a schwa?...yeah, you really do need to know). If you don't like to teach, the hours pass very slowly, and home starts to look pretty good. That doesn't mean that people who essentially like to teach don't have bad moments, but you'll soon figure out it you want to do this for any significant period.

Are you a teacher or a traveler? Of course you can be both, but a teacher starts to collect things and a traveler doesn't. A traveler is always thinking about his/her next country and when they can go. When I taught in Taiwan a long time ago (1992), I loved to talk to the travelers about their adventures in places like China, Mongolia, and Indonesia. Sigh.

How old are you? Well, it's relevant in a lot of places if you want to teach with a working visa. In some countries, age doesn't matter much. And if you just want to do privates, you can find a way to teach most places. In reality, an older person with a good personality and a good teaching style is golden. You just ain't a sex symbol. And it's a great way to extend that social security check!

Finally, are you brave enough to do it? Believe me, the hardest thing about going overseas is the 24 weeks or days or hours before you go. Once you land, you're too busy sorting things out to worry about whether you should have done this!

Just remember, whatever your age, you'll have to be a adult and stand on your own two feet. That means treating your job, your coworkers, and your students with respect. And a little kindness shown to others goes a long way.

It'll be an adventure, I can guarantee you that.
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coledavis



Joined: 21 Jun 2003
Posts: 1838

PostPosted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 8:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well done, No Moss, I think that was excellent advice. As another experienced teacher, I agree.
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bulgogiboy



Joined: 23 Feb 2005
Posts: 800

PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2012 9:12 am    Post subject: Re: To teach or not to teach Reply with quote

No Moss wrote:
Hi, everybody. No Moss here with advice, not questions!

I'm old now, retired and living in Thailand. Enjoying myself and still teachin' a bit here and there. I always loved to teach, and I have taught in Asia for 12 years now.

Here are a few suggestions on how to look at teaching English abroad assuming that you are a native speaker with a university degree and perhaps a TEFL cert but without a degree in teaching or TESOL.

How much money do you need to make? If you need to make a lot of money, you've reduced your choices to a few countries, and sometimes to a few cities within those countries. Korea, China, Vietnam, Vietnam, Russia (major cities), the Middle East, and a few countries in South America (Colombia and Chile, make that Santiago and Bogota). If you just need to make living expenses, most places will do. Pick a spot, and you can probably find a way to teach there.

What's the visa situation like? Some places make it very easy, others make it hard (Indonesia is tough these days, I hear). There are usually a few ways to skin the cat, especially if you want to do just privates, or are willing to work under the table.

Do you like to teach? If you do, you'll prosper. Teaching English ain't rocket science, although there are things you'll need to know that you don't know now (what's a phrasal verb? what's a schwa?...yeah, you really do need to know). If you don't like to teach, the hours pass very slowly, and home starts to look pretty good. That doesn't mean that people who essentially like to teach don't have bad moments, but you'll soon figure out it you want to do this for any significant period.

Are you a teacher or a traveler? Of course you can be both, but a teacher starts to collect things and a traveler doesn't. A traveler is always thinking about his/her next country and when they can go. When I taught in Taiwan a long time ago (1992), I loved to talk to the travelers about their adventures in places like China, Mongolia, and Indonesia. Sigh.

How old are you? Well, it's relevant in a lot of places if you want to teach with a working visa. In some countries, age doesn't matter much. And if you just want to do privates, you can find a way to teach most places. In reality, an older person with a good personality and a good teaching style is golden. You just ain't a sex symbol. And it's a great way to extend that social security check!

Finally, are you brave enough to do it? Believe me, the hardest thing about going overseas is the 24 weeks or days or hours before you go. Once you land, you're too busy sorting things out to worry about whether you should have done this!

Just remember, whatever your age, you'll have to be a adult and stand on your own two feet. That means treating your job, your coworkers, and your students with respect. And a little kindness shown to others goes a long way.

It'll be an adventure, I can guarantee you that.


I always got the impression that South America was one of the, many admittedly, peanut-paying continents for TEFL teachers? All the jobs I've seen advertised in Colombia and Chile seem to be very-low paid. What do you class as 'decent money'? And is that made by being freelance, and doing private lessons?

Cheers,
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EFLeducator



Joined: 16 Dec 2011
Posts: 595
Location: NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS

PostPosted: Fri Apr 27, 2012 2:50 pm    Post subject: Re: To teach or not to teach Reply with quote

bulgogiboy wrote:
No Moss wrote:
Hi, everybody. No Moss here with advice, not questions!

I'm old now, retired and living in Thailand. Enjoying myself and still teachin' a bit here and there. I always loved to teach, and I have taught in Asia for 12 years now.

Here are a few suggestions on how to look at teaching English abroad assuming that you are a native speaker with a university degree and perhaps a TEFL cert but without a degree in teaching or TESOL.

How much money do you need to make? If you need to make a lot of money, you've reduced your choices to a few countries, and sometimes to a few cities within those countries. Korea, China, Vietnam, Vietnam, Russia (major cities), the Middle East, and a few countries in South America (Colombia and Chile, make that Santiago and Bogota). If you just need to make living expenses, most places will do. Pick a spot, and you can probably find a way to teach there.

What's the visa situation like? Some places make it very easy, others make it hard (Indonesia is tough these days, I hear). There are usually a few ways to skin the cat, especially if you want to do just privates, or are willing to work under the table.

Do you like to teach? If you do, you'll prosper. Teaching English ain't rocket science, although there are things you'll need to know that you don't know now (what's a phrasal verb? what's a schwa?...yeah, you really do need to know). If you don't like to teach, the hours pass very slowly, and home starts to look pretty good. That doesn't mean that people who essentially like to teach don't have bad moments, but you'll soon figure out it you want to do this for any significant period.

Are you a teacher or a traveler? Of course you can be both, but a teacher starts to collect things and a traveler doesn't. A traveler is always thinking about his/her next country and when they can go. When I taught in Taiwan a long time ago (1992), I loved to talk to the travelers about their adventures in places like China, Mongolia, and Indonesia. Sigh.

How old are you? Well, it's relevant in a lot of places if you want to teach with a working visa. In some countries, age doesn't matter much. And if you just want to do privates, you can find a way to teach most places. In reality, an older person with a good personality and a good teaching style is golden. You just ain't a sex symbol. And it's a great way to extend that social security check!

Finally, are you brave enough to do it? Believe me, the hardest thing about going overseas is the 24 weeks or days or hours before you go. Once you land, you're too busy sorting things out to worry about whether you should have done this!

Just remember, whatever your age, you'll have to be a adult and stand on your own two feet. That means treating your job, your coworkers, and your students with respect. And a little kindness shown to others goes a long way.

It'll be an adventure, I can guarantee you that.


I always got the impression that South America was one of the, many admittedly, peanut-paying continents for TEFL teachers? All the jobs I've seen advertised in Colombia and Chile seem to be very-low paid. What do you class as 'decent money'? And is that made by being freelance, and doing private lessons?

Cheers,


Sadly, that's Latin America in general amigo. Mexico City is the same way. You get paid peanuts. Main reason why I left that place. Asis is the place to be. Cool
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Zero



Joined: 08 Sep 2004
Posts: 1402

PostPosted: Sat Apr 28, 2012 2:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I thought Californy was the place you oughta be?
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No Moss



Joined: 15 Apr 2003
Posts: 1995
Location: Thailand

PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2012 11:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, thanks for the replies. I've heard that Santiago, Chile pays $15-25 for private lessons. Bogota, Colombia something similar. That's privates. Is there any other way to make decent money without a teaching degree? But for sure there are easier places to make money than Latin America. I confess that I have only taught in Asia.

Thailand doesn't happen to be one of them, however. But, on the other hand, here I can be middle class on a smallish pension, my investments, and a little dab of earnings from teaching the most useful of languages.

And, uh, beautiful young things wave at me and call me "hansum man". Gee, I just didn't get that in Californy, Zero.
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HLJHLJ



Joined: 06 Oct 2009
Posts: 1218
Location: Ecuador

PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2012 11:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You can charge a similar amount for privates in Ecuador, and the cost of living is significantly lower than say, Chile.
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The Great Wall of Whiner



Joined: 29 Jan 2003
Posts: 4946
Location: Blabbing

PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2012 4:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Excellent advice.
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Prof.Gringo



Joined: 07 Nov 2006
Posts: 2230
Location: Dang Cong San Viet Nam Quang Vinh Muon Nam!

PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2012 4:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

No Moss wrote:
Well, thanks for the replies. I've heard that Santiago, Chile pays $15-25 for private lessons. Bogota, Colombia something similar. That's privates. Is there any other way to make decent money without a teaching degree? But for sure there are easier places to make money than Latin America. I confess that I have only taught in Asia.

Thailand doesn't happen to be one of them, however. But, on the other hand, here I can be middle class on a smallish pension, my investments, and a little dab of earnings from teaching the most useful of languages.

And, uh, beautiful young things wave at me and call me "hansum man". Gee, I just didn't get that in Californy, Zero.


Lat. America is low wage all the way around, but the cost of living does vary. I would say on a pension, Social Security, investments, savings etc that Ecuador, Bolivia & Peru offer the best bang for the buck and are pretty safe right now, esp. when compared to the instability in Mexico due to the drug war and the 60,000 dead in just the last 5 years.

But Mexico does offer quick/cheap flights back to the US, often direct to many cities, and the availability of many American foods and consumer goods. Spanish is pretty easy to learn and very useful back in the USA and of course south of the Rio Grande/Bravo south to the tip of S. America and the famous Tierra del Fuego.

But Thailand offers a cheaper CoL and very friendly people and an excellent and better paying EFL job market than what can be had in Mexico or the rest of Lat. Am.
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EFLeducator



Joined: 16 Dec 2011
Posts: 595
Location: NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS

PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2012 8:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Prof.Gringo wrote:
Lat. America is low wage all the way around.


Right!

FAIR...& BALANCED.
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Prof.Gringo



Joined: 07 Nov 2006
Posts: 2230
Location: Dang Cong San Viet Nam Quang Vinh Muon Nam!

PostPosted: Fri May 18, 2012 1:36 pm    Post subject: Re: To teach or not to teach Reply with quote

No Moss wrote:
Hi, everybody. No Moss here with advice, not questions!

I'm old now, retired and living in Thailand. Enjoying myself and still teachin' a bit here and there. I always loved to teach, and I have taught in Asia for 12 years now.

Here are a few suggestions on how to look at teaching English abroad assuming that you are a native speaker with a university degree and perhaps a TEFL cert but without a degree in teaching or TESOL.

How much money do you need to make? If you need to make a lot of money, you've reduced your choices to a few countries, and sometimes to a few cities within those countries. Korea, China, Vietnam, Vietnam, Russia (major cities), the Middle East, and a few countries in South America (Colombia and Chile, make that Santiago and Bogota). If you just need to make living expenses, most places will do. Pick a spot, and you can probably find a way to teach there.

What's the visa situation like? Some places make it very easy, others make it hard (Indonesia is tough these days, I hear). There are usually a few ways to skin the cat, especially if you want to do just privates, or are willing to work under the table.

Do you like to teach? If you do, you'll prosper. Teaching English ain't rocket science, although there are things you'll need to know that you don't know now (what's a phrasal verb? what's a schwa?...yeah, you really do need to know). If you don't like to teach, the hours pass very slowly, and home starts to look pretty good. That doesn't mean that people who essentially like to teach don't have bad moments, but you'll soon figure out it you want to do this for any significant period.

Are you a teacher or a traveler? Of course you can be both, but a teacher starts to collect things and a traveler doesn't. A traveler is always thinking about his/her next country and when they can go. When I taught in Taiwan a long time ago (1992), I loved to talk to the travelers about their adventures in places like China, Mongolia, and Indonesia. Sigh.

How old are you? Well, it's relevant in a lot of places if you want to teach with a working visa. In some countries, age doesn't matter much. And if you just want to do privates, you can find a way to teach most places. In reality, an older person with a good personality and a good teaching style is golden. You just ain't a sex symbol. And it's a great way to extend that social security check!

Finally, are you brave enough to do it? Believe me, the hardest thing about going overseas is the 24 weeks or days or hours before you go. Once you land, you're too busy sorting things out to worry about whether you should have done this!

Just remember, whatever your age, you'll have to be a adult and stand on your own two feet. That means treating your job, your coworkers, and your students with respect. And a little kindness shown to others goes a long way.

It'll be an adventure, I can guarantee you that.


Feel free to ad to my sticky thread: "Advice to NEWBIES", which has almost 14,000 views! Shocked Very Happy Cool
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