Get Started Teaching English Abroad: A Step-By-Step Guide

Hello everyone,

Have you ever imagined going on an amazing adventure around the world, getting to know different cultures, and making a difference in people’s lives?

Teaching English abroad is an awesome chance to do exactly that.

Whether you just finished school, want to switch careers, or are enjoying your retirement, teaching English in another country can be a truly life-changing experience.

In this super helpful guide, we’ll dive into the thrilling world of teaching English abroad.

We’ll talk about all the great things you’ll gain from it, what you need to do, and even give you some practical tips to make your journey even more awesome.

Teaching English abroad is not just about getting paid. It has many advantages that make it a rewarding choice.

One of the best things about it is that you get to immerse yourself in a new culture.

You will learn about the customs, traditions, and way of life of the local community, which will help you appreciate and understand different cultures better.

Another great thing is that you can travel and explore your host country and nearby places during holidays and vacations.

It’s a fantastic opportunity to satisfy your desire to see new places and create memories that will last a lifetime.

Lastly, living and working in a foreign country can be a life-changing experience.

It will push you out of your comfort zone and help you develop important skills like adaptability, patience, and communication with people from different cultures.

These skills will not only benefit you personally but also professionally.

So, teaching English abroad is definitely a great choice!

Learning a new language can be really hard, but it’s also super cool!

If you teach English in another country, you’ll get to hear and speak the local language all the time.

It’s like being surrounded by the language, which helps you learn faster.

Plus, if you want to work in education or with international groups, teaching English abroad is a great way to get experience and show off your skills.

Different places might have different rules, but most schools and organizations want English teachers to have a bachelor’s degree.

It can be in any subject, but some places might prefer degrees in education, linguistics, or English.

So, if you’re thinking about teaching English abroad, make sure you have that degree!

TEFL/TESOL Certification: To become a teacher of English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) or to teach English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL), it is often required or highly preferred to have a certification.

These courses will teach you effective teaching methods, how to plan lessons, and how to manage a classroom.

Native or Near-Native English Proficiency: Many programs will want you to be a native English speaker or have very good English skills.

Clean Background Check: Most employers will want to make sure you have a clean criminal record before hiring you.

Relevant Experience (Preferred): While it’s not always necessary, having previous teaching experience, especially in teaching English as a Second Language (ESL) or working with different groups of people, can make you a stronger candidate.

You may want to read:


Getting Started:

Finding a Teaching Job Abroad:

There are different ways to find teaching jobs in other countries, and the process can vary depending on the country and the type of program you’re interested in.

Here are some common options:

Online Job Boards: Websites like Dave’s ESL Cafe, Go Overseas, and are great places to look for teaching jobs all over the world.

These sites let you search for jobs based on what you want, like where you want to work, how much you want to get paid, and what kind of job you want.

Recruitment Agencies: Lots of special recruitment agencies work with schools and language centers in other countries to find good English teachers.

These agencies can help you with the application process and give you useful support and resources.

Government Programs: Some countries, like Japan and South Korea, have programs run by the government that hire English teachers from other countries.

These programs usually offer good salaries, benefits, and support services.

Personal Connections: Making connections with people can be really helpful when looking for teaching jobs abroad. Talk to your friends, family, or people who went to the same university as you.

They might know someone or have recommendations for you.

In-Country Job Search: If you’re already in another country or planning to go to a specific country, you can also look for teaching jobs there.

You can visit language schools, put your resume on local job boards, or meet people from other countries who live there.

Getting Ready for Your Big Adventure

Once you’ve landed a teaching job in another country, it’s time to get ready for your amazing trip.

Here are some important things to do:

Get the Right Papers: Make sure you have a valid passport, all the necessary visas or work permits, and any other important documents for the country you’ll be living in.

This can take a while, so start early.

Study Your New Home: Find out as much as you can about the culture, traditions, and local ways of your new place.

This will help you fit in better and adjust to your new surroundings.

Practice Your Language Skills: If you’re going to be teaching in a country where they don’t speak English, it’s a good idea to start learning the local language.

Even knowing some basic words and phrases can really help you in your daily life.

Sort Out Your Money: Figure out how much it costs to live in your new country and make a budget.

Decide how you’ll handle your money while you’re away and think about opening a bank account there.

Get Ready for Your Teaching Adventure!

It’s important to be prepared when teaching English abroad. Here are some things you can do to make the most of your experience:

Dress Appropriately: Research the dress code and cultural norms in your host country.

Wearing culturally appropriate attire shows respect for local customs and helps you integrate better.

Pack Smart: While it’s nice to have some personal and comfort items from home, try to pack light and focus on essentials.

You can always buy additional things once you’ve settled in.

Embrace the Culture: Immerse yourself in the local culture by trying new foods, attending cultural events, and learning the language.

This will not only make your experience more enjoyable but also help you connect with your students and the community.

Be Flexible and Open-minded: Teaching abroad can come with unexpected challenges and cultural differences.

Stay flexible and adapt to new situations with a positive attitude.

Being open-minded will go a long way in making your teaching adventure a success.

Remember, teaching abroad is a wonderful opportunity for learning and growth. Enjoy every moment and make the most of your adventure!

Make Connections: It’s important to connect with your coworkers, classmates, and people in your community.

These connections can make your experience better and teach you about different cultures.

Learn and Grow: Look for chances to go to workshops, conferences, or training sessions about teaching English as a foreign language.

This will help you get better at what you do and learn new techniques.

Capture Your Journey: Keep a journal, take pictures, or start a blog to remember your experiences and how you’ve grown.

These memories will be special reminders of your amazing adventure.

Take Care of Yourself: Living and working in a new place can be exciting but also overwhelming.

Remember to take care of yourself by doing things that make you happy and relaxed.

Explore and Have Fun: Use your free time to explore your new country and nearby places.

This is a great chance to learn new things and make unforgettable memories.

Different cultures have different ways of teaching and students have different expectations.

It’s important to be flexible and adjust your teaching methods and classroom management to meet your students’ needs.

Moving to a new country can sometimes make you feel lonely or isolated, especially if you don’t know the language or culture.

Try to make friends with other people from your home country, join clubs or groups that share your interests, and get involved in the local community.

It’s also important to take care of your health and safety.

Learn about the precautions you need to take in your new country and make sure you know how to get help in case of an emergency.

Remember, facing these challenges is a normal part of the experience and overcoming them can help you grow as a person.

Enjoy the journey, ask for help when you need it, and focus on the amazing opportunities that await you.


Check out these awesome teaching books I recommend:


Teaching and Learning in English Medium Instruction: An Introduction


English Language Teaching: Recent Approaches

Cambridge Primary English Workbook 3

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