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What’s it Really Like to Teach English Abroad?

If you want to teach English abroad you have probably  wondered what your day-to-day life would be like, living and working in a foreign country. You may not know the native language, the food will be new to your taste buds and the way of life will be completely different than what you are accustomed to. If this sounds like an adventure, than you should consider joining LanguageCorps and teaching English abroad! Teaching English as a foreign language (TEFL) can be one of the most rewarding and fulfilling experiences of a lifetime. What could be a better job than getting paid to travel, being fully immersed in a different culture and meeting new people?

If you decide to teach English in Asia, the first step is a rigorous 4-week training period which begins in Phnom Penh, Cambodia where you earn your TEFL Certificate! Next, you will travel to the country of your choosing to teach English abroad. You may be thinking to yourself, “What have I gotten myself into?” But don’t fret, you are not alone in this. Many people who decide to teach English abroad go through a phase called “culture shock,” a completely normal, temporary feeling of anxiety or frustration. These feelings stem from leaving behind all that is normal and familiar to you and getting used to new customs and a new set of norms, which can sometimes be very overwhelming. This opportunity to teach English abroad will broaden your horizons and help you grow as a person, so remember these feelings of culture shock do not last forever!

Maybe you will decide to teach English in China. First thing to remember is relax! You are on the adventure of a lifetime and it will take some time to adjust to the different customs in China, so be patient with yourself. The TeachChina Program provides ongoing Mandarin lessons to help you feel more confident and capable of living and getting around the foreign country.  Take advantage of the training and opportunities offered by LanguageCorps, as they are there to help you adjust. You have chosen one of the greatest countries to teach English abroad. In general, teachers are revered and respected by their Chinese students and many see it as a great privilege to have a native English-speaking instructor.

Immerse yourself in the culture as much as possible; this is your new home for the remainder of your placement. Enjoy the excursions to Siem Reap and Angkor Wat in Cambodia and to the beach resort town of Sihanoukville. Make friends with the local people, this will greatly increase your understanding of the language and you may even make lifelong friends. Get involved by volunteering, traveling or participating in program activities, teams or clubs as much as possible. The more you become involved, the more you will appreciate the country and its people and the faster you will stop feeling the affects of culture shock.

With an open mind, a sense of adventure and a desire to learn as much as possible from your new country, you will be ready to teach English abroad!

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