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English Teaching in China

Posted by in Education: Foreign Language  ~  February 08, 2012 03:54:56 PM

The Chinese have been recognized by the whole world for quite a number of innovations resting on their laurels. From medicine to science, this race has certainly proven its worth when it comes to contributing to the world. However, there is one thing that this magnificent race isn’t too good at. Enter English.

English is the world’s international language. As such, more and more countries are starting to feel the need to master this language, to further raise their chances at attaining international growth. China is no different from all these nations. As of the moment, the country has a flourishing economy, anticipating future and insurmountable manpower. Evidently, the command of the English language is the one and only vital element that this Country needs to complete its voyage to success.

Foreign teachers are being hired in China as you read this article. In fact, it wouldn’t be unexpected if you yourself might be considering the challenge. However, what you must know is that teaching in China is far more complicated and complicated than just staying there for a visit or two. The life of a foreign English teacher is way more challenging, so to speak, than that of a tourist. It consists of hard work, a whole new environment and all other issues that come with settling down in a new place. As such, it would be best to pack as much knowledge as you need before you fly to the land of the Dragon.

For starters, it would greatly help if you knew what the Chinese favoured when it comes to the teachers they hire. Most English learning institutions prefer natural born speakers. As such, they put citizens of America, South Africa, New Zealand, Australia and England in very high regard. It is likely that a 17 year old American high school undergraduate will get a teaching job in China than a very capable English speaker who graduated college, from countries like India or the Philippines. As such, you must stack up your resume with more pizzazz such as graduating with honors or working for multinational schools or companies. Make your credentials to stand out as much you could.

You must also be ready for a myth breaching experience if you go to China to teach English. Unlike common notions of “serendipity in a teacup” or the tall Shanghai buildings you saw in Mission Impossible III, one can actually say that living conditions as a foreign teacher are not as exorbitant as one may think. Most foreign teachers are assigned to far off rural areas. Contrary to the common factories one would usually think off, these far off provinces actually resemble lack of industrial progress. Most of these provinces live an agricultural lifestyle, which spell the absence of lavish bathrooms, spacious sleeping quarters and overweening decorations. If it’s any consolation though, Chinese food will still taste good anywhere you go.

There’s also a regular reduction when it comes to the average salary of foreign English teachers in the country. Opposed to how it used to be four to five years ago, most public Chinese schools and universities only pay as little as RMB 3000. Even private institutions that used to pay RMB 15000 to RMB 18000 have downsized salary to an average of RMB 4000.

On top of that, an average foreign teacher will generally have to pay half of her sleeping quarters and phone bills. As such, a portion of your possible salary will surely be allocated to your living necessities. Concisely, being an English teacher in China is no longer as auspicious as it used to be a few years ago in terms of monetary aspects. However, more laws and safety measures have also been set up by the government in order to protect teachers from illegal recruiters and even human smuggling. This is something you should consider when it comes to assessing the positive aspect of being an English teacher in China.

Now that you know all these, you can providentially valuate whether you still prefer to push through with going to China. With these pros and cons, your expectations and readiness will certainly be at the right levels.