When I was in university, I was always interested in teaching English abroad. After university, I traveled throughout Asia and met many people teaching there. They absolutely loved it and recommended it, so I decided to pursue TESOL and become an ESL teacher.
The benefits of living in another country are countless. In many of these countries, you have the ability to live very comfortably and save a lot of money. In turn, you live and experience a totally different culture and way of life!
Tim Sharp completed the TESOL certificate course with OnTESOL. He is currently teaching English with his partner, Taylor, in Taiwan.
Adjusting To a New Way of Life
The biggest challenge for me so far has been adjusting to a different way of life. It can be a little overwhelming in the beginning.
The start-up costs can be quite expensive if you are planning to find a TESOL job on your own rather than using a recruiter. I would recommend saving a little before moving here. However, after a couple of months, it becomes to get easier and easier to adjust.
Living Your Best Life
I chose to teach in Taiwan for many reasons. The people here are some of the friendliest in the world. The cost of living in combination with the great salary was also a big motivating factor.
The standard of living is quite high for foreigners. An average meal at a Taiwanese restaurant may cost you 2-3 dollars Canadian, in comparison to $20 in Canada. My girlfriend and I live on the 20th floor of a high rise with a swimming pool for around $800 Canadian a month in the central business district of a major city. This would cost nearly 4 times more in a city like Vancouver or Toronto.
Easing Into Teaching English
One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned is to be patient with students and teachers. As an English teacher, you need to be patient with students and with your co-workers. Being lost in translation in Taiwan is a very common thing. The OnTESOL certificate helped me gain the confidence needed to teach abroad. The training period would have been a lot more daunting had we not taken the OnTESOL course. It helped us ease into the teaching process a lot easier.
Getting Ready to Teach English in Taiwan
There are many TESOL jobs available in Taiwan and different schools suit different people. We decided to move to Taiwan first to research several different schools. When we arrived, we met a few other foreigners who recommended the school we’re currently at. We looked into the school and liked what we saw in terms of reviews and the pay. The hours at our school are also guaranteed which is an important look for in Buxibans (after-school centers) in Taiwan.
The biggest concern for us was not having a job lined up before we came. We had read online that this was the best way to go about the process and I couldn’t recommend it more. Accepting a job overseas before arriving is a nice cushion, however, signing into a year contract without actually seeing the school in person can be a big mistake.
Would I Recommend Teaching English in Taiwan?
I would recommend anyone considering teaching abroad to do it. You can save a lot of money while experiencing a new culture in a new place. It is very rewarding, and you can live a very high quality of life. The food, the people, the weather, and the environment are all aspects of what I absolutely love about Taiwan. There are plenty of jobs available and I would recommend it to anyone who wants to make the move to Taiwan.