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Teaching English in China is an amazing opportunity for your personal learning, growth and work experience. Particularly if you’re heading towards a teaching career, being able to teach English in a country as incredible as China is surely an opportunity that shouldn’t pass you by! There are a few options for teaching English in China, so we’ve rounded up some ideas and given you the best tips. If you’re really set on on a job in China teaching English, why not do a combination of all of the below?!

Author: Abi Buller
24 Jan 16:29
Work in a Chinese school

There are 1000’s of schools in China, all keen to have native English speakers to support students with their learning. This option will likely require you to obtain a Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) award beforehand, so keep this in mind before making this your first option. These positions are usually paid and will allow you to stay in China for a long period of time; most TEFL workers will stay for at least one year to allow them to gain a good amount of experience and feel fully immersed in Chinese culture.

Volunteer at a summer camp

If you’re looking for an indirect, but certainly very fun, way to teach English in China, it’s likely that summer camp may be the best option for you. While the focus for campers is very much on having fun, you’ll be conversing in English all day and will have the opportunity to teach new words and phrases to the campers. Often through simple games and activities, you’ll be able to help with improving the language skills of the campers – something which can feel incredibly rewarding! Summer camp typically lasts around 2-3 months, which also means you’ll be able to gain a good amount of experience but not commit to a full year if you’re not sure that teaching English is really for you.

Become an Au Pair

Being an au pair, especially in somewhere like China, is an extremely unique experience. You’ll be living and working with a certain family, acting as a big brother or sister and a generally positive asset to the house you’re matched with. The type of arrangement which is often preferred as a relatively long term commitment, working as an au pair is something you might consider taking on after volunteering at a summer camp. Your time at summer camp will allow you to interact with a range of different children, getting to know different habits and picking up tips and tricks on how best to transfer language skills to young people. You’ll also have the comfort of being around peers in your position, so you can help each other along before delving into being a dedicated au pair!

Which part of China?

Schools and au pair families can, of course, be found all across China. So if this is your focus, take some time to think about whether you’d feel most comfortable in a rural location or more of a bustling urban environment. Similarly with summer camps, living among reindeer and local tribes in the Mongolian countryside might sound blissful, you might be more inclined to regular city trips so would suit a location closer to Qingdao, Beijing or Shanghai. Either way, most people like to experience a bit of both when travelling after, so keep an open mind and make the best of wherever you choose to go.

How does it work?

Summer camp applications can be submitted right here on the Adventure China website, where you’ll also find all the tips, advice and contacts you might need to help you along. For teaching in schools, do some research into TEFL awards and consider the type of school you’d like to aim for. If you’re leaning more towards the idea of au pairing, you can research programmes such as ‘Lo Pair’ or even do some networking at camp to see if any parents would like to take you on after you’ve bonded so well with their child at summer camp.

Happy job hunting!

Abi Buller
Abi Buller is a freelance writer with a love for adventure and trying new things. Having worked as a camp counsellor in both China and America, Abi enjoys sharing travel tips and summer camp memories with the hope of inspiring others to explore as much as possible!

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