For Vietnamese people thinking about working abroad, now is a great time to do so. Many countries have eased travel restrictions, and in fact in some cases are eagerly looking for skilled and qualified Vietnamese workers to integrate into their society. One great example of this is as a TEFL (Teach English as a Foreign Language) teacher.
Below is a guide on some of the best places to go and teach TEFL abroad, as well as some handy tips on how to make that transition smooth and seamless. Additionally, there will also be some examples of how to make TEFL lessons fun and engaging for learners there, and how to maximise the decision on a financial level.
When thinking specifically about which countries to teach English abroad, Japan ought to be right near the top of that particular list. Located not far away, at the Eastern edge of the Asian continent, the Land of the Rising Sun is a great place to take those first steps into the world of teaching TEFL.
For one thing, the salary levels on offer there are typically quite high, especially when compared to the cost of living. This means that more of the earnings from the TEFL day job can go into day trips away, or a weekend excursion to another part of the country.
On top of that, TEFL tutors who have just got their TEFL certification in hand have a great chance of finding a top job in Japan quickly. This is because recruiters there heavily favour candidates who have taken the extra step to get qualified, as this shows a real intent to help others learn. In fact, the general rule is that most if not all Japanese recruiters require a TEFL certification to even consider a candidate.
Last but not least, a vast number of Japanese people are keen to learn the English language, and so there are plenty of options for the new TEFL tutor to choose. They could range from working with a kindergarten group, all the way through to teaching adults in a business English setting.
As one of the two largest populations on the planet, besides India, China has a massive market for English language learners ready and willing to study. This creates a huge opportunity for a TEFL educator to enter the market, and help students reach their full potential.
With so many cities to choose from, making the right decision can depend on a number of factors. For those who enjoy wildlife and wild animals in their native habitats, Szechuan province is renowned as the home of pandas, and also of spicy food, for those who are that way inclined.
By contrast, the capital city of Beijing is the place to be for those who have a penchant for history and learning more about how China has grown to be the country it is today. There are opportunities to explore the Hidden City, or take a trip to the Olympic Park, built for the 2008 Olympic Games.
Finally, the major town of Shanghai is another viable option for those who thrive on the hustle and bustle of a metropolis, and a feeling of action and adventure around every corner. Shanghai locals boast of the fact that their city is always awake, and there are thriving expatriate communities dotted all over the place too.
For a pace of life and lifestyle that is closer to Vietnam, Thailand could be the place to go to build a TEFL career. Popular with adult learners, from university students to start-up businesses, this is a fantastic choice for a TEFL teacher who is comfortable exploring a range of topics with their learners.
Lessons here tend to be more open and relaxed than in other parts of Asia, and this can appeal to some teachers who prefer to go with the flow. In certain kinds of adult classes, the emphasis is on building conversational fluency and confidence, and this could end up with debates and discussions about any and all kinds of topics.
That is not to say that it is difficult to find work with children as a certified TEFL instructor, and in fact working with Thai kids can be just as fun and rewarding as anywhere else in many ways. For instance, these young learners thrive on the positive energy and good feelings that might come with a TEFL tutor who knows how to harness that attitude, and direct it towards growing in the English language.
The growing tourism sector in Thailand has also created a real need to learn English. Many hotels and restaurants have cottoned on to the fact that English speakers from all corners of the globe come to Thailand to get away from it all, especially to island settings such as Phuket and Koh Samui.
This makes teaching TEFL in this sector a tantalising proposition. Besides, surely there is no better way to unwind at the end of a day teaching TEFL than to lay by the beach and top up the tan.
As with moving to any other country, it is worth bearing in mind the changes that need to take place to make emigrating successful. These can include learning a touch of the local lingo, bringing alternative forms of currency, and being ready to expect visa questions at different points along the way.
Luckily, South Korea generally has a warm and welcoming attitude towards expatriates, and provides a lifestyle that is comfortable and easy to get used to. Furthermore, South Koreans love to hear about other cultures, learning from the customs and traditions of others as well as being happy to share their own thoughts and feelings.
In any case, teaching in South Korea can work for a TEFL teacher of almost any background, from one who loves big city life in Seoul, to those who prefer a more sedate speed of living in a smaller city such as Busan. A day to day TEFL experience in South Korea can vary depending on the type of education setting and age group. Of course, a kindergarten setting in downtown would be very different to a high school environment in a rural area, for obvious reasons.