Resources to Teach ESL Abroad
Now is one of the best times to consider teaching English as a Second Language (ESL) abroad. With domestic jobs hard to find and demand rising abroad for qualified instructors who are willing and able to travel, teachers of ESL have a great deal of opportunity overseas.
To make the most of your time teaching abroad, you will need to know all about the region to which you will be travelling. This includes the culture of learning as well as the customs of everyday life. Here are seven resources to help you prepare to teach ESL abroad:
1. ESL Jobs World
The first step to getting your ESL career off the ground is finding and landing a job. Whether you have a preference for the area you would like to teach in or are open to traveling pretty much anywhere, ESL Jobs World is a great place to begin looking for an ESL position. ESL Jobs World boasts the largest number of ESL work listings out there, all curated and supplemented with helpful professional material from the sites founder, David Rogers, who has taught ESL all over the world for the past two decades. Post your resume and explore the opportunities today!
TESOL.org is a one-stop resource for ESL teachers. It combines industry news, forums, job listings, teaching resources, education and certification information, grant and scholarship information, and all sorts of tips and tricks for starting your ESL career off on the right foot. No matter what question you have, TESOL.org should be one of the first places you look to for an answer.
3. Dave’s ESL Café
One of the best ways to get an idea of what to expect while teaching English abroad is to find out from teachers who have been there before. Dave’s ESL Café is a great place to to have this conversation due to its extensive forums. There you’ll find ongoing discussions on subjects ranging from country-specific job listings to ESL classroom activities. There’s even a thread dedicated to newbies!
4. Fodor’s Travel Talk Forum
The opportunity to travel and explore a foreign culture is one of the greatest rewards of teaching ESL abroad. In order to fully appreciate and understand your host country, you should dive into as many travel guides and forums as possible. Start with Fodor’s Travel Talk Forum. As one of the premier names in travel guides, Fodor’s content can be trusted. The reviews and anecdotes you find there are from people who really know, understand and care about what a traveler wants.
Wikitravel is another excellent resource for information on traveling to any region of the world. Formatted like Wikipedia, Wikitravel is a user-updated collection of information and suggestions on places around the globe. There are even a number of fun facts that you might not find anywhere else. A discussion board as well as “Traveler’s Pub” allow the user to ask questions of the mass of visitors for all sorts of advice and tips about travelling in particular countries.
If you are going to be traveling in foreign lands, having a portable, dynamic, user-based guide to the world is helpful. Gowalla, much like FourSquare, is a smart phone app that allows you to bookmark your locations so that you remember where you’ve been and plan out what to do wherever you’re going. But Gowalla also allows users to make virtual passports, craft pre-planned trips, share photos and earn rewards. It’s the perfect all-in-one travel app for making the most of every stop. Here’s a list of other great travel apps to keep you on your toes.
With all the traveling and exploration of foreign culture, the focus of teaching ESL abroad remains just that: teaching. TeachingTips.com has an entire collection of resources to help you in the classroom, where language barriers and cultural divides might make your job more difficult than the typical American classroom. Peruse the websites list of lesson plans, handouts, teaching tips and activities for ESL teachers to ensure that your most important destination — the classroom — is one you’re prepared for.