Japan understands the importance of the English language to stay competitive in the global market. Thus, they’ve put up several English schools. The problem is they don’t have enough English native speakers around to teach.
There are plenty of reasons to try teaching in Japan. Besides being paid quite well, you would also have the chance to explore their very interesting culture. A teaching job in the country would also look good in your resume.
But you just don’t want to teach, do you? You want to be the best there is. To help you achieve your goal, here are some tips:
1. Learn Japanese. If you want to teach them English well, you should know their language first. That’s the beginning of proper communication. Though you’re not really required to speak the language before you can teach, it helps you a great deal if you know how. There are several Japanese schools and learning materials you can purchase or download.
2. Learn from the English teachers in Japan. You can look for forums for ESL teachers already in Japan. Read about their experiences off and on campus. Their stories may not be yours when you reach the country, but at least you’ll have an idea of what to expect.
3. Save some money. Though you’re paid handsomely, that should not mean you should spend everything. Japan is expensive compared to other Asian countries, and you don’t become a millionaire just by teaching English here. The good news there are shops and restaurants that offer cheap goods.
4. Know what to expect. Teaching is not an easy job, especially if you’re doing so in a foreign country and in front of a foreign crowd. There are a lot of differences to think about, first and foremost the language barrier.
It may take a while before you can get used to teaching. Moreover, you need to understand that kids and adults have different approaches to learning. You need to exert more effort and patience with the children.
5. Beat the homesickness. It’s normal to get homesick or sad for being far away from your loved ones, but don’t let the emotions get the best of you. When you feel like falling into a state of depression or anxiety, just use subliminal messages or affirmations.
Every morning, you can speak of positive words to yourself such as “I can do this” or “I am eager to share my knowledge to my students.” You can also download subliminal messages mp3s and put them in your iPod, mobile phone, or mp3 player.
You can also get rid of homesickness and loneliness by always keeping in touch. With various technologies available, that shouldn’t be too hard to do.
6. Make your lessons entertaining. Wouldn’t you learn much faster if the lessons are engaging and fun? It’s the same thing with the Japanese students. Use your creativity and ingenuity to come up with innovative and entertaining approaches to introduce English to them.
Most of all enjoy your teaching experience. It may happen only once in your life.
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