Teaching English in South Korea

To teach English in Korea you must meet the following criteria:

  • Citizenship from a recognized English-speaking nation: U.S., U.K., Ireland, Canada, Australia, New Zealand or South Africa.
  • Bachelor’s degree/diploma from an accredited college or university (4 years in US/3 years in UK).
  • Original national level criminal record check (FBI in the U.S.) that is free of any charges or convictions – DUIs, DWIs and any other misdemeanors or felonies will disqualify any prospective teachers from receiving an E-2 visa required to teach Englishin Korea (minor traffic violations will not disqualify you).
  • Clean health check and drug test.

During the process of applying and interviewing for English teaching positions, and getting a visa processed at the consulate after signing a contract, prospective teachers should expect to be able to produce the following documents:

  • Bachelor’s and/or Master’s degree/diploma
  • Sealed college or university transcript
  • Original national level criminal background check (FBI in the U.S.)
  • Passport photos
  • Original contract (to be provided by your employer for visa processing at consulate)
  • Original passport that is valid for at least one year

For some positions, particularly those in public schools and universities, English teachers in Korea may be required to provide the following during the application and/or visa processes:

  • Proof of full-time teaching experience
  • Copy of TEFL certificate
  • Copy of teaching license or certificate

 

Salaries for First Year English Teachers in South Korea

  • Public schools:  1.8 – 2.0 million KRW (approximately $1,600 – $1,800 USD) per month.
  • Private schools: 2.0-2.1 million KRW ($1,800 – $1,900 USD) per month.

 
Salaries for Experienced 
English Teachers in South Korea

  • Public schools: 2.0 – 2.7 million KRW ($1,800 – $2,400 USD) per month
  • Private schools: 2.1-3.0 million KRW ( $1,900 – $2,750 USD) per month

 

Additional Benefits for English teachers in South Korea

  • Severance bonus– Most English teachers also receive an extra month salary bonus upon successful completion of their contract.
  • Paid vacation– Public school teachers receive 18 days (three work weeks) paid vacation plus 15-18 national holidays.  Private school teachers typically receive 7-10 days paid vacation plus 15-18 national holidays.
  • Furnished housing – Most teachers will be provided with a single-occupancy apartment that is fully furnished.
  • Airfare– Most teachers will be required to buy their airline ticket upfront and then will be reimbursed upon arrival.  In some cases, the school may provide the teacher’s airline ticket up front.
  • Health care– As an employee you are on the Korean national health care system. 
  • Converting won into other currencies and transferring it back to your home country– It is not difficult to convert Korean wan into U.S. dollars or other foreign currencies, nor is it difficult to transfer money from Korea to banks in the U.S. and elsewhere (though there may be some nominal administrative fees).  If you plan to transfer money to your bank account in your home country, make sure that you bring all relevant account information (account numbers, routing numbers, swift codes, etc.) with you to Korea.

 

How much can I save teaching English in South Korea and why can I save so much as an English teacher in South Korea?

  • Most English teachers in Korea will be able to save up to 50 % of their salary after expenses, which can range from the equivalent of $800 – $1,200 a month.
  • Korea is a very prosperous nation that highly values educationso schools, parents and the government are all willing to offer high salaries and good benefits to recruit qualified native English speaking teachers.
  • Rent is provided, so English teachers do not need to worry about an item that for most people will consume 30% or more of their monthly budget.
  • Cost of living– food, utilities, public transportation, etc. – is lower than in most large American and Western European cities.
  • Teachers who complete a 12 month contract will typically receive a severance bonus equivalent to one month’s pay.

——————————————————————————————————-

TEFL Zorritos: What could be better?  Study in a beautiful Peruvian beach town at our beach-front outdoor training centre with great accommodations available, including delicious local food.  Fully accredited 120 Hour TEFL course with a practical approach that provides you with 10 advanced certifications at absolutely no extra cost!  And a job placement program in Peru and guaranteed lifetime job assistance waiting for you when you complete the course.

Class sizes are limited, so don’t wait, make your reservation today!

Teaching English in South Korea

To teach English in Korea you must meet the following criteria:

  • Citizenship from a recognized English-speaking nation: U.S., U.K., Ireland, Canada, Australia, New Zealand or South Africa.
  • Bachelor’s degree/diploma from an accredited college or university (4 years in US/3 years in UK).
  • Original national level criminal record check (FBI in the U.S.) that is free of any charges or convictions – DUIs, DWIs and any other misdemeanors or felonies will disqualify any prospective teachers from receiving an E-2 visa required to teach English in Korea (minor traffic violations will not disqualify you).
  • Clean health check and drug test.

During the process of applying and interviewing for English teaching positions, and getting a visa processed at the consulate after signing a contract, prospective teachers should expect to be able to produce the following documents:

  • Bachelor’s and/or Master’s degree/diploma
  • Sealed college or university transcript
  • Original national level criminal background check (FBI in the U.S.)
  • Passport photos
  • Original contract (to be provided by your employer for visa processing at consulate)
  • Original passport that is valid for at least one year

For some positions, particularly those in public schools and universities, English teachers in Korea may be required to provide the following during the application and/or visa processes:

  • Proof of full-time teaching experience
  • Copy of TEFL certificate
  • Copy of teaching license or certificate

 

Salaries for First Year English Teachers in South Korea

  • Public schools:  1.8 – 2.0 million KRW (approximately $1,600 – $1,800 USD) per month.
  • Private schools: 2.0-2.1 million KRW ($1,800 – $1,900 USD) per month.

 
Salaries for Experienced 
English Teachers in South Korea

  • Public schools: 2.0 – 2.7 million KRW ($1,800 – $2,400 USD) per month
  • Private schools: 2.1-3.0 million KRW ( $1,900 – $2,750 USD) per month

 

Additional Benefits for English teachers in South Korea

  • Severance bonus– Most English teachers also receive an extra month salary bonus upon successful completion of their contract.
  • Paid vacation– Public school teachers receive 18 days (three work weeks) paid vacation plus 15-18 national holidays.  Private school teachers typically receive 7-10 days paid vacation plus 15-18 national holidays.
  • Furnished housing – Most teachers will be provided with a single-occupancy apartment that is fully furnished.
  • Airfare– Most teachers will be required to buy their airline ticket upfront and then will be reimbursed upon arrival.  In some cases, the school may provide the teacher’s airline ticket up front.
  • Health care– As an employee you are on the Korean national health care system. 
  • Converting won into other currencies and transferring it back to your home country– It is not difficult to convert Korean wan into U.S. dollars or other foreign currencies, nor is it difficult to transfer money from Korea to banks in the U.S. and elsewhere (though there may be some nominal administrative fees).  If you plan to transfer money to your bank account in your home country, make sure that you bring all relevant account information (account numbers, routing numbers, swift codes, etc.) with you to Korea.

 

How much can I save teaching English in South Korea and why can I save so much as an English teacher in South Korea?

  • Most English teachers in Korea will be able to save up to 50 % of their salary after expenses, which can range from the equivalent of $800 – $1,200 a month.
  • Korea is a very prosperous nation that highly values education so schools, parents and the government are all willing to offer high salaries and good benefits to recruit qualified native English speaking teachers.
  • Rent is provided, so English teachers do not need to worry about an item that for most people will consume 30% or more of their monthly budget.
  • Cost of living– food, utilities, public transportation, etc. – is lower than in most large American and Western European cities.
  • Teachers who complete a 12 month contract will typically receive a severance bonus equivalent to one month’s pay.

——————————————————————————————————-

TEFL Zorritos: What could be better?  Study in a beautiful Peruvian beach town at our beach-front outdoor training centre with great accommodations available, including delicious local food.  Fully accredited 120 Hour TEFL course with a practical approach that provides you with 10 advanced certifications at absolutely no extra cost!  And a job placement program in Peru and guaranteed lifetime job assistance waiting for you when you complete the course.

Class sizes are limited, so don’t wait, make your reservation today!

Teaching English in South Korea

Our September 2015 Course

Logan with his fellow trainees

An interview with Logan Austin from the United States who graduated from TEFL Zorritos in September 2015. 

My name is Logan Austin, and I am originally from Hughesville, Missouri, USA. I am currently living and teaching in Busan, South Korea.

I completed my TEFL Certificate course in September of 2015. After the course, I went back home to gather the needed documents to teach in South Korea. In just three months, I had been hired and was in Busan preparing to teach.

For me, experience has been the most rewarding thing about teaching abroad. When I decide to move back to the USA, I want to be a high school teacher; so gaining teaching experience while traveling and experiencing different cultures is perfect for me. South Korea is a very modern country, but everything is still so different from the U.S. Living abroad helps you to adapt to different policies, foods, and lifestyles. I think it has really helped me grow as a person.

The most challenging thing is just the fact that everything is different. For me, it was: a new job, new friends, new food, new house, new culture, new language, and even a new way of getting from one place to another. At one point this year, it was really overwhelming; but I got through it and focused on the positive changes that I enjoyed.

Our September 2015 Course

Logan in a Peer Teaching session

In my school, the textbooks take up the majority of the class time, but everyday I still use things that I learned in my course. Before the course, I had no idea how to communicate to students who don’t speak English as their first language. Every day, I use many techniques that I learned from Ellie. The course also taught me how to teach material through interactive activities. This has helped me a lot because kindergarteners have to be active. The course also gave me confidence in my profession. I have knowledge that I learned from someone who taught many years of ESL. This year would have been much harder without that knowledge.

I would just say that teaching is going to take up a lot of your time. Teaching abroad is a great opportunity to see the world, but the work is a big part of your time. If you are a prepared and confident teacher, your experience abroad will be more rewarding.

I would like to teach somewhere in South America next. Right now I am applying for jobs in Chile and Uruguay.

TEFL Zorritos was one of the best decisions I have ever made. I learned so much, but also, I genuinely had a lot of fun. The beach in Zorritos is the best learning environment.

Read more of TEFL Zorritos’ Success Stories on our website or contact us about applying to enroll.

____________________________________________________________________________

TEFL Zorritos: What could be better? Study in a beautiful Peruvian beach town at our outdoor beachfront training centre with great accommodations available, including delicious local food. Fully accredited 120 Hour TEFL course with a practical approach that provides you with 10 advanced certifications at absolutely no extra cost! And a job placement program in Peru including positions with a work visa, paid holidays, health insurance and other incredible benefits. 

Class sizes are limited, so don’t wait, make your reservation today!

____________________________________________________________________________

TEFL Success Stories – Part 2

Teaching in South Korea – Jeffrey

After spending two years as an ESL teacher of Grades 3-6 (ages 10 to 13 in Korea, compared to 8 to 12 in Canada), Jeffrey is back home for a short time, he is planning to go back to Korea next term.

What do you do as an ESL teacher?

Jeffrey: According to my contract, my duties are to assist the reigning Korean teachers. Just what “assist” means is not written in stone. I’ve taught alongside a number of teachers during my time here, and just how active of a role I take in a given lesson has varied with each one (although “pretty active” is generally the norm). I teach at a public school, so we have a curriculum to follow, but it’s a little flexible itself.

As far as planning goes, I usually prepare some sort of interactive PowerPoint presentation as well as a fun game that helps the students practice speaking, reading, or writing the lesson material. This probably isn’t indicative of every public school, though.

————————————————————————————————————-

Study a TEFL course with TEFL Zorritos in Peru, South America and travel the world, live abroad and enrich people’s lives by teaching them English. A TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) Certificate is an internationally accredited and accepted qualification to teach English to people from non-English speaking countries. More questions? Head to our website

—————————————————————————

What does an average day for you consist of?

Jeffrey: Four or five hours of teaching in the morning and early afternoon. Classes are 40 minutes each followed by a break. I always have a Korean co-teacher by my side – sometimes it’s necessary to explain things such as game instructions and grammar rules in Korean.

How did you get used to teaching without having major experience before you left?

Jeffrey: At a public school, they generally won’t just throw you into the deep end and tell you to start swimming. I observed for a few days, and was afterward able to ease into the role. Having a co-teacher is pivotal at that stage.

Before you left, you cited culture shock, homesickness and the language barrier being major obstacles you would have to overcome.   How did you tackle them?

Jeffrey: Having an open mind is essential for overcoming culture shock. I’ve just kind of taken everything in stride. There are quite a few foreigners here, so you’re never going it alone, either. As for homesickness, there’s always Skype.

The language barrier isn’t a problem as often as you think it is. Even if mastering the spoken language is a different story, the written alphabet is very easy to learn, which makes things such as reading menus much easier. English signs are everywhere, especially when you take public transport. And even if you only learn the Korean equivalents of “hello,” “thank you” and “how much,” you’ll be OK in most situations.

————————————————————————————————————

TEFL Zorritos JOB PLACEMENT PROGRAM IN PERU & LIFETIME JOB ASSISTANCE

—————————————————————————————

What skills have you developed through your teaching experience?

Jeffrey: OK, you got me. The language barrier is a bit more pronounced when you’re teaching eight-year-olds. Overcoming it has been a big challenge, but I feel very comfortable teaching them these days. I’ve gotten to know what kinds of language I can use to get points across, both oral and visual.

You’ve also been able to do some travelling within and outside Korea. Has this been a perk of working abroad?

Jeffrey: Yes, yes, 100% yes. Asia is beautiful. Go there.

—————————————————————————–

TEFL Zorritos: What could be better? Study in a beautiful Peruvian beach town at our beach-front outdoor training centre with great accommodations available, including delicious local food. Fully accredited 120 Hour TEFL course with a practical approach that provides you with 10 advanced certifications at absolutely no extra cost! And participate in our job placement program in Peru when you complete the course.

Class sizes are limited, so don’t wait, make your reservation today!

Teaching English in South Korea

To teach English in Korea you must meet the following criteria:

  • Citizenship from a recognized English-speaking nation: U.S., U.K., Ireland, Canada, Australia, New Zealand or South Africa.
  • Bachelor’s degree/diploma from an accredited college or university (4 years in US/3 years in UK).
  • Original national level criminal record check (FBI in the U.S.) that is free of any charges or convictions – DUIs, DWIs and any other misdemeanors or felonies will disqualify any prospective teachers from receiving an E-2 visa required to teach Englishin Korea (minor traffic violations will not disqualify you).
  • Clean health check and drug test.

During the process of applying and interviewing for English teaching positions, and getting a visa processed at the consulate after signing a contract, prospective teachers should expect to be able to produce the following documents:

  • Bachelor’s and/or Master’s degree/diploma
  • Sealed college or university transcript
  • Original national level criminal background check (FBI in the U.S.)
  • Passport photos
  • Original contract (to be provided by your employer for visa processing at consulate)
  • Original passport that is valid for at least one year

For some positions, particularly those in public schools and universities, English teachers in Korea may be required to provide the following during the application and/or visa processes:

  • Proof of full-time teaching experience
  • Copy of TEFL certificate
  • Copy of teaching license or certificate

 

Salaries for First Year English Teachers in South Korea

  • Public schools:  1.8 – 2.0 million KRW (approximately $1,600 – $1,800 USD) per month.
  • Private schools: 2.0-2.1 million KRW ($1,800 – $1,900 USD) per month.

 
Salaries for Experienced 
English Teachers in South Korea

  • Public schools: 2.0 – 2.7 million KRW ($1,800 – $2,400 USD) per month
  • Private schools: 2.1-3.0 million KRW ( $1,900 – $2,750 USD) per month

 

Additional Benefits for English teachers in South Korea

  • Severance bonus– Most English teachers also receive an extra month salary bonus upon successful completion of their contract.
  • Paid vacation– Public school teachers receive 18 days (three work weeks) paid vacation plus 15-18 national holidays.  Private school teachers typically receive 7-10 days paid vacation plus 15-18 national holidays.
  • Furnished housing – Most teachers will be provided with a single-occupancy apartment that is fully furnished.
  • Airfare– Most teachers will be required to buy their airline ticket upfront and then will be reimbursed upon arrival.  In some cases, the school may provide the teacher’s airline ticket up front.
  • Health care– As an employee you are on the Korean national health care system. 
  • Converting won into other currencies and transferring it back to your home country– It is not difficult to convert Korean wan into U.S. dollars or other foreign currencies, nor is it difficult to transfer money from Korea to banks in the U.S. and elsewhere (though there may be some nominal administrative fees).  If you plan to transfer money to your bank account in your home country, make sure that you bring all relevant account information (account numbers, routing numbers, swift codes, etc.) with you to Korea.

 

How much can I save teaching English in South Korea and why can I save so much as an English teacher in South Korea?

  • Most English teachers in Korea will be able to save up to 50 % of their salary after expenses, which can range from the equivalent of $800 – $1,200 a month.
  • Korea is a very prosperous nation that highly values educationso schools, parents and the government are all willing to offer high salaries and good benefits to recruit qualified native English speaking teachers.
  • Rent is provided, so English teachers do not need to worry about an item that for most people will consume 30% or more of their monthly budget.
  • Cost of living– food, utilities, public transportation, etc. – is lower than in most large American and Western European cities.
  • Teachers who complete a 12 month contract will typically receive a severance bonus equivalent to one month’s pay.

——————————————————————————————————-

TEFL Zorritos: What could be better?  Study in a beautiful Peruvian beach town at our beach-front outdoor training centre with great accommodations available, including delicious local food.  Fully accredited 120 Hour TEFL course with a practical approach that provides you with 10 advanced certifications at absolutely no extra cost!  And a guaranteed job waiting for you when you complete the course.

Class sizes are limited, so don’t wait, make your reservation today!

TEFL Success Stories – Part 31

Annie – South Korea

I am writing regarding my experience so far of teaching English in South Korea. I’ll point out straight away that I have no where near the experience level of teaching English as the other teachers I have read do. In fact I am just a babe in the woods who has been in Korea for a mere three months. Let me tell you about myself.

My name is Annie and I grew up on a farm in the South West country of NSW Australia. I met my darling husband Yohan when I was 19 and studying at university In Queensland. He is Korean. He was the first Korean I had ever met. When I first talked to him at our church, I had no idea where Korea was precisely, although I had heard about it from the show ‘Mash’. I related this to him, but of course he’d never heard of it. He had come to Australia from Seoul to study English and had just been enrolled in the university after his English studies were completed. Needless to say we were fascinated with each other and soon fell in love.

We were married in the new millennium, lived in Australia for a while while I completed my studies, then we moved to South Korea, his home. Now I am an English teacher, which is something I never quite imagined myself to be, but I have adapted quite well and am enjoying myself.

————————————————————————————————————-

Study a TEFL course with TEFL Zorritos in Peru, South America and travel the world, live abroad and enrich people’s lives by teaching them English. A TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) Certificate is an internationally accredited and accepted qualification to teach English to people from non-English speaking countries. More questions? Head to our What is TEFL? page

—————————————————————————

I have recently finished teaching in my first contract which was with a university for a six week intensive English course for university students. I found myself to be the youngest and the only female teacher on the staff. I had done some tutoring as well as the TESOL course in Australia, but nothing prepares you enough for facing a class of nearly twenty watchful and expectant eyes in a large, echoing classroom. I’ll never forget my first class. I stepped into the sombre room and was confronted with the sight of a circle students all about my age. I am 23 years old. Up until that moment, the reality of teaching had not quite dawned upon me, but strangely, I plucked up my courage and faced the students now as their teacher. This very fact gave me courage and I quickly evolved into my new role. My heart pounded within me but I stepped towards them and raised my voice with a command I did not know I had. In those first few days of working there I also had an optional class given to me to talk about Australian life and culture. When I opened the door to go into this class for the first time, I quickly pulled back again as I had not planned on almost 60 students turning up! So I pulled myself together and walked in with supreme confidence and instead of the discussion style lesson I had planned, I ‘lectured’ by talking about the history and recent events happening in Australia. After doing that my confidence grew enormously and I felt I could now face anything.

These memories stand out most in my mind, as well as the way I grew to love teaching, the students and all the other teachers. This program was itself especially rewarding for all because it was a complete immersion program with absolutely no Korean allowed. The student’s level of English improved dramatically over the number of weeks.

Working at the small institutes is a little different because the English level is very low as they are children, but also the motivation is low as they are there because of their parents. I find that the best way to get the children to like learning English is to get them to really like you. You yourself are probably the only native speaker or ‘real life’ example of English they have. So by being a good teacher to them, I think this will have a great impact on their young, developing lives.

South Korea is a great place to live and work, especially if you are young and looking for adventure like me. I also have had the added benefit and experiences of being involved with a Korean family. They are all really loving towards me. I truly can say I have absolutely no problems whatsoever, and have learned so many things about people and life already.

I am only in the beginning stage of my life and career, but look forward to life with such an expectancy that I shall have a myriad of things to write about again in the near future.

Happy teaching!

—————————————————————————–

TEFL Zorritos: What could be better?  Study in a beautiful Peruvian beach town at our outdoor beach-front training centre with great accommodations available, including delicious local food.  Fully accredited 120 Hour TEFL course with a practical approach that provides you with 10 advanced certifications at absolutely no extra cost!  And guaranteed job waiting for you when you complete the course.

Class sizes are limited, so don’t wait, make your reservation today!

TEFL Success Stories – Part 2

Teaching in South Korea – Jeffrey

After spending two years as an ESL teacher of Grades 3-6 (ages 10 to 13 in Korea, compared to 8 to 12 in Canada), Jeffrey is back home for a short time, he is planning to go back to Korea next term.

What do you do as an ESL teacher?

Jeffrey: According to my contract, my duties are to assist the reigning Korean teachers. Just what “assist” means is not written in stone. I’ve taught alongside a number of teachers during my time here, and just how active of a role I take in a given lesson has varied with each one (although “pretty active” is generally the norm). I teach at a public school, so we have a curriculum to follow, but it’s a little flexible itself.

As far as planning goes, I usually prepare some sort of interactive PowerPoint presentation as well as a fun game that helps the students practice speaking, reading, or writing the lesson material. This probably isn’t indicative of every public school, though.

————————————————————————————————————-

Study a TEFL course with TEFL Zorritos in Peru, South America and travel the world, live abroad and enrich people’s lives by teaching them English. A TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) Certificate is an internationally accredited and accepted qualification to teach English to people from non-English speaking countries. More questions? Head to our What is TEFL? page

—————————————————————————

What does an average day for you consist of?

Jeffrey: Four or five hours of teaching in the morning and early afternoon. Classes are 40 minutes each followed by a break. I always have a Korean co-teacher by my side – sometimes it’s necessary to explain things such as game instructions and grammar rules in Korean.

How did you get used to teaching without having major experience before you left?

Jeffrey: At a public school, they generally won’t just throw you into the deep end and tell you to start swimming. I observed for a few days, and was afterward able to ease into the role. Having a co-teacher is pivotal at that stage.

Before you left, you cited culture shock, homesickness and the language barrier being major obstacles you would have to overcome.   How did you tackle them?

Jeffrey: Having an open mind is essential for overcoming culture shock. I’ve just kind of taken everything in stride. There are quite a few foreigners here, so you’re never going it alone, either. As for homesickness, there’s always Skype.

The language barrier isn’t a problem as often as you think it is. Even if mastering the spoken language is a different story, the written alphabet is very easy to learn, which makes things such as reading menus much easier. English signs are everywhere, especially when you take public transport. And even if you only learn the Korean equivalents of “hello,” “thank you” and “how much,” you’ll be OK in most situations.

————————————————————————————————————

TEFL Zorritos GUARANTEED JOB UPON COMPLETION OF OUR TEFL COURSE

—————————————————————————————

What skills have you developed through your teaching experience?

Jeffrey: OK, you got me. The language barrier is a bit more pronounced when you’re teaching eight-year-olds.  Overcoming it has been a big challenge, but I feel very comfortable teaching them these days. I’ve gotten to know what kinds of language I can use to get points across, both oral and visual.

You’ve also been able to do some travelling within and outside Korea.  Has this been a perk of working abroad?

Jeffrey: Yes, yes, 100% yes. Asia is beautiful. Go there.

—————————————————————————–

TEFL Zorritos: What could be better?  Study in a beautiful Peruvian beach town at our beach-front outdoor training centre with great accommodations available, including delicious local food.  Fully accredited 120 Hour TEFL course with a practical approach that provides you with 10 advanced certifications at absolutely no extra cost!  And a guaranteed job waiting for you when you complete the course.

Class sizes are limited, so don’t wait, make your reservation today!

TEFL Success Stories – Part 31

Annie – South Korea

I am writing regarding my experience so far of teaching English in South Korea. I’ll point out straight away that I have no where near the experience level of teaching English as the other teachers I have read do. In fact I am just a babe in the woods who has been in Korea for a mere three months. Let me tell you about myself.

My name is Annie and I grew up on a farm in the South West country of NSW Australia. I met my darling husband Yohan when I was 19 and studying at university In Queensland. He is Korean. He was the first Korean I had ever met. When I first talked to him at our church, I had no idea where Korea was precisely, although I had heard about it from the show ‘Mash’. I related this to him, but of course he’d never heard of it. He had come to Australia from Seoul to study English and had just been enrolled in the university after his English studies were completed. Needless to say we were fascinated with each other and soon fell in love.

We were married in the new millennium, lived in Australia for a while while I completed my studies, then we moved to South Korea, his home. Now I am an English teacher, which is something I never quite imagined myself to be, but I have adapted quite well and am enjoying myself.

————————————————————————————————————-

Study a TEFL course with TEFL Zorritos in Peru, South America and travel the world, live abroad and enrich people’s lives by teaching them English. A TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) Certificate is an internationally accredited and accepted qualification to teach English to people from non-English speaking countries. More questions? Head to our What is TEFL? page

—————————————————————————

I have recently finished teaching in my first contract which was with a university for a six week intensive English course for university students. I found myself to be the youngest and the only female teacher on the staff. I had done some tutoring as well as the TESOL course in Australia, but nothing prepares you enough for facing a class of nearly twenty watchful and expectant eyes in a large, echoing classroom. I’ll never forget my first class. I stepped into the sombre room and was confronted with the sight of a circle students all about my age. I am 23 years old. Up until that moment, the reality of teaching had not quite dawned upon me, but strangely, I plucked up my courage and faced the students now as their teacher. This very fact gave me courage and I quickly evolved into my new role. My heart pounded within me but I stepped towards them and raised my voice with a command I did not know I had. In those first few days of working there I also had an optional class given to me to talk about Australian life and culture. When I opened the door to go into this class for the first time, I quickly pulled back again as I had not planned on almost 60 students turning up! So I pulled myself together and walked in with supreme confidence and instead of the discussion style lesson I had planned, I ‘lectured’ by talking about the history and recent events happening in Australia. After doing that my confidence grew enormously and I felt I could now face anything.

These memories stand out most in my mind, as well as the way I grew to love teaching, the students and all the other teachers. This program was itself especially rewarding for all because it was a complete immersion program with absolutely no Korean allowed. The student’s level of English improved dramatically over the number of weeks.

Working at the small institutes is a little different because the English level is very low as they are children, but also the motivation is low as they are there because of their parents. I find that the best way to get the children to like learning English is to get them to really like you. You yourself are probably the only native speaker or ‘real life’ example of English they have. So by being a good teacher to them, I think this will have a great impact on their young, developing lives.

South Korea is a great place to live and work, especially if you are young and looking for adventure like me. I also have had the added benefit and experiences of being involved with a Korean family. They are all really loving towards me. I truly can say I have absolutely no problems whatsoever, and have learned so many things about people and life already.

I am only in the beginning stage of my life and career, but look forward to life with such an expectancy that I shall have a myriad of things to write about again in the near future.

Happy teaching!

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TEFL Success Stories – Part 2

Teaching in South Korea – Jeffrey

After spending two years as an ESL teacher of Grades 3-6 (ages 10 to 13 in Korea, compared to 8 to 12 in Canada), Jeffrey is back home for a short time, he is planning to go back to Korea next term.

What do you do as an ESL teacher?

Jeffrey: According to my contract, my duties are to assist the reigning Korean teachers. Just what “assist” means is not written in stone. I’ve taught alongside a number of teachers during my time here, and just how active of a role I take in a given lesson has varied with each one (although “pretty active” is generally the norm). I teach at a public school, so we have a curriculum to follow, but it’s a little flexible itself.

As far as planning goes, I usually prepare some sort of interactive PowerPoint presentation as well as a fun game that helps the students practice speaking, reading, or writing the lesson material. This probably isn’t indicative of every public school, though.

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Study a TEFL course with TEFL Zorritos in Peru, South America and travel the world, live abroad and enrich people’s lives by teaching them English. A TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) Certificate is an internationally accredited and accepted qualification to teach English to people from non-English speaking countries. More questions? Head to our What is TEFL? page

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What does an average day for you consist of?

Jeffrey: Four or five hours of teaching in the morning and early afternoon. Classes are 40 minutes each followed by a break. I always have a Korean co-teacher by my side – sometimes it’s necessary to explain things such as game instructions and grammar rules in Korean.

How did you get used to teaching without having major experience before you left?

Jeffrey: At a public school, they generally won’t just throw you into the deep end and tell you to start swimming. I observed for a few days, and was afterward able to ease into the role. Having a co-teacher is pivotal at that stage.

Before you left, you cited culture shock, homesickness and the language barrier being major obstacles you would have to overcome.   How did you tackle them?

Jeffrey: Having an open mind is essential for overcoming culture shock. I’ve just kind of taken everything in stride. There are quite a few foreigners here, so you’re never going it alone, either. As for homesickness, there’s always Skype.

The language barrier isn’t a problem as often as you think it is. Even if mastering the spoken language is a different story, the written alphabet is very easy to learn, which makes things such as reading menus much easier. English signs are everywhere, especially when you take public transport. And even if you only learn the Korean equivalents of “hello,” “thank you” and “how much,” you’ll be OK in most situations.

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What skills have you developed through your teaching experience?

Jeffrey: OK, you got me. The language barrier is a bit more pronounced when you’re teaching eight-year-olds.  Overcoming it has been a big challenge, but I feel very comfortable teaching them these days. I’ve gotten to know what kinds of language I can use to get points across, both oral and visual.

You’ve also been able to do some travelling within and outside Korea.  Has this been a perk of working abroad?

Jeffrey: Yes, yes, 100% yes. Asia is beautiful. Go there.

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TEFL Zorritos: What could be better?  Study in a beautiful Peruvian beach town at our beach-front outdoor training centre with great accommodations available, including delicious local food.  Fully accredited 120 Hour TEFL course with a practical approach that provides you with 5 advanced certifications at absolutely no extra cost!  And a guaranteed job waiting for you when you complete the course.

Class sizes are limited, so don’t wait, make your reservation today!