Teaching English In China: An Experience Of A Lifetime
The official name of China is the People’s Republic of China. It’s located in eastern Asia. Beijing is the capital and Shanghai the largest city. Russia is the only country with more land area than China. The geography of the country is very diverse. It has mountains and rain forests as well as deserts and coastline. The country has a long and significant history of over 5,000 years. China was initially ruled by dynasties and emperors. The rule of the Tang and Song dynasties are considered to be the golden age of China, due to country’s technological and cultural progress.The Great Wall of China was built over a period of two thousand years to protect the country from outside invasions.
The new China is at the center of the global economy. It exports and imports more goods than any other country. The Chinese Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is second only to the United States. Which is estimated to overtake as the largest economy in the world by the year 2020. As a result of its increasing international influence, and economic and population growth, China is considered by many to be an emerging superpower. Jobs and opportunities are booming here. Continued economic success requires communication skills with the outside world.
China’s population is over 1.35 billion people. It’s the world’s most populous country. Many citizens in China want to learn how to speak English. The demand for English teachers in China is extremely high, mainly teachers from native English speaking countries. There are teaching opportunities for secondary schools, universities, language institutes, and many other places. There is also a demand for private tutors. Pay and accommodations offered will vary from employer to employer.
Possessing a TEFL (Teaching English as Foreign Language) license can be the gateway to a prosperous career in China. Although China has a booming economy, the cost of living is still much lower there than Western countries. Even a new English teacher can live comfortably on a teaching salary. Are you interested in Chinese cuisine? You can easily eat out for every meal and still save away a sizeable amount. Do you want to explore the cultural treasures of China? The whole country is here for you to enjoy at a very low cost.
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Travel in China is one of the great attractions of teaching English as a foreign language here. Have you ever dreamed of standing by the Great Wall? Exploring the Forbidden City? Inspecting the Terracotta Army of Xi’An? Watching the Panda’s play in the Wolong Nature Reserve in Sichuan Province? That dream can be realized when you make the journey to China. Visiting dynamic modern cities such as Shanghai is an exciting part of travel and life in China. Most teaching jobs are in big cities, where you can enjoy round-the-clock nightlife and the excitement of modern Asian culture. With the rise of domestic and international budget air carriers, other countries around Asia are within easy reach.
When you teach your native language abroad, you also learn the language and culture of your host country. It will also give you a unique opportunity to learn the Chinese language yourself. Chinese is becoming one of the most important skills in the global economy. Just as more Chinese are learning English, more Westerners are learning Chinese. Adding Chinese language skills to your CV will be a great opportunity for professional improvement. The language is becoming more and more valuable throughout the global business world, and you will be at the center of things when you participate in cultural exchange as an English teacher.
Before you move to China as an English teacher, first do some extensive research and decide which part of this huge country you would like to move. Shanghai and Beijing are large metropolitan areas while Xian and Nanjing are cities with a deep history. Some of the provincial capitals of China: Chengdu, Wuhan, and Kunming are also nice places to live. Your decision should also be based on year-round weather conditions, and the languages are spoken in different cities.
In addition to that, there are a few things you need to consider before you look for English teaching jobs in China. Are you looking for a job at a university, private language school or a high school? High school jobs are the hardest to find, but private language schools offer higher salary with smaller sized classes and university jobs even generally you with accommodation.
Once you’ve narrowed down your choice to a couple of cities and what kind of school you would like to be teaching English, you can begin your research to find contact information of the schools or universities. Most Chinese universities have English websites but finding a private school can be a little tougher. Having local contacts or using a headhunting agency comes in handy. Once you have the contact information, email them your resume along with a cover letter and photo. If you are unsure of whether the contact person is correct, write a request in the email to forward your resume to the current person in charge of hiring. Furthermore, just like any other job hunt, your resume will have to be sent to many different schools in China. When you receive a response, don’t hesitate to find out every detail about the job offer and your responsibilities. Moving to a foreign country for a job is not easy! You need to be confident and satisfied with your employer.
Once your job contract has been confirmed, you should research how to teach English in China. Learn about the culture and how it differs from yours. The next step is to arrange your plane ticket to China. Once again, just like any other air ticket, the earlier you purchase, the cheaper it will be. If you have chosen to reside in one of the smaller cities in China, your flight will probably connect through Beijing, Shanghai or Hong Kong. Arrange for a representative from your school to meet you at the airport and schedule your arrival about a week before your date to report to work so that you have enough time to settle down and explore your neighborhood.
With some work and patience, you may be able to secure a position in China. It can be the experience of a lifetime. You’ll have the opportunity to learn more about a beautiful, unique country and help Chinese students who are keen to learn English reach their goals.