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Teaching in Mongolia - I desperately need some advice

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Joined: 19 Apr 2010
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Tue Apr 20, 2010 8:38 am    Post subject: Teaching in Mongolia - I desperately need some advice Reply with quote

Hi. I'm currently a ESL tecaher in Poland and have decided that in the autumn (this year) I would love to go to Mongolia. The only problem is that I've found it really difficult to find schools. I have found a few: Talk Talk English, Santis, and a couple of thers. But, to be honest, I have absolutely no idea about these places, and I would really like information about other schools that people have had good experiences in. If you've ever taught in Mongolia, or know somebody who has, or know anything about about it, please, please could you shed some light? Are there any particularly good schools? Or particulary bad ones? What's the best way to find these schools - I've tried looking on the net and it seems to be like trying to find a needle in a haystack. I suppose I've been fixing my search on Ulan Bataar - the capital, but am open to any other suggetsions. I would be really grateful for any help / ideas / suggetsions you can give. Thanks
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Sally Olsen

Joined: 08 Apr 2004
Posts: 1322
Location: Canada,France, Brazil, Japan, Mongolia, Greenland, Canada, Mongolia, Ethiopia next

PostPosted: Tue Apr 20, 2010 12:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You are in for a wonderful time. I would also suggest Erdenet or Darhan. You can teach in the universities too if you have the qualifications. I was at the University of the Humanities in UB and highly recommend it. There is a branch of the University of Mongolia in Erdenet that I really enjoyed giving workshops for. I don't know about the other schools but I have never heard anything bad about any of them. Some pay more than others I guess. I always enjoy teaching for a private school because if they are good, they take care of you like a family. I worked for Eagle English and Mathematics School in Erdenet and they are looking for teachers. Have you been to the Polish Embassy to check out their information? There are quite a few Polish teachers in Mongolia or at least I met many.
There is good information on Lonely Planet about what to take for the different seasons. There is a lot of information on Google about the history, culture and do's and don'ts - don't step on the rope holding the horses, go into a ger on the right side, if you touch someone's foot shake their hand and give them back their karma, NEVER EVER step on a manhole cover, keep your valuables in your bra, try not to go on bus 13 in UB, the rain dries before it hits you but take along some waterproof shoes for the rivers that develop in the street during a rain storm (there are no storm drains), you can buy winter clothes there in the market for cheaper than other places and they will be warmer, ask your colleagues about deals before you buy anything as they will know the cheapest places to buy things, I hope you like mutton because it is the best and cheapest thing to eat and I found it delicious, bring along favourite candies or portable food stuffs because anything foreign is expensive, dress in a suit for school (ladies too), don't buy anything from China because it falls apart when you wash it or is the cheapest product they produce for trading markets, go to visit the Education Department of the University in UB for some great posters to teach English and to join the teacher's association, save some money to buy a wall hanging, hat or scarf from Amnesty International as they buy from women and help to support the countryside women, check out the book stalls near the Post Office or in the squares for old English books for your class, all your clothes should be washable as there are no cleaners and it is dusty during the sandstorms and in summer, be prepared to leave your clothes there after your tour because they will smell of mutton and people need them, visit the carpet factory in Erdenet and order a carpet as they are beautiful and cheap, visit Sacher's Cafe, a German bakery and coffee house with great hot chocolate and pastries and always a wall hanging on display for sale, there is a restaurant next to the University of the Humanites which is cheaper but always safe food and there are stalls for different types of food, the art gallery is great as are the museums - take along your students. Be flexible and don't expect that things will be exactly like home - that is why you go to a new place. They always seem to get things done no matter the obstacles. Take along a challenging English teaching book to read while you are there and to leave them when you go.
What a wonderful experience awaits you, buy a long blue scarf to present to your boss when you come and give it to her/him with both hands at the same time and give presents that open up (not a hat which opens down for example but rather a bowl that opens up).
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