Travel & Teach - Taiwan


Global English students are working all over the world with their accredited TESOL certificates. Find out how TESOL training from Global English has made a difference to their lives:

Marie de Kock

I'm teaching kindergarten (ages 3 - 8) and cram school (ages 8-12) in a small town on the East coast of Taiwan. I work for the "Gervas American Immersion School", whose head office is in Taipei and I teach at their school in Touchen.

This is my second year in Taiwan; I am much better equipped to teach than last year when I taught while studying your course. Therefore I enjoy the teaching much more. My advice to anyone who wants to teach in Taiwan is to avoid agents at all costs. Direct employment with schools can be arranged - take a look at (Teaching English and Living in Taiwan). Another bit of advice: Try to work on the Eastern side of the island because of the pollution, unhygienic lifestyles, chaos and congestion in the streets on the Western side. I'm travelling and seeing the natural beauty of the island and loving it.

Victoria Gibson

If you want to have legal working status in Taiwan and therefore have a working visa you do need a degree and/or a TESOL Certificate. If you do not have legal working status you cannot have an ARC and therefore no health insurance.

The best place to find English teaching jobs is in the ‘China Post’ newspaper. They have a website – - go to Education and click on jobs. Most employers will want to see you before they offer you a position. The working hours are often afternoon and evening time, except for Kindergarten, which is any time between 8am and 6pm. Work for kindergarten and cram schools is plentiful.

If you teach cram school children after school then you have time to go and study mandarin in the mornings, which many English teachers do.

Michelle Korven-Culvert

I started about 1 month ago. Since I have started work here I have dealt with complete and utter culture shock. However...I adjusted quickly and am really enjoying my time here.

Our school is what's called a cram school. There are a lot of cram schools in Taiwan and the schools are quite competitive with each other to get students. Parents pay for their classes here. A cram school is kind of like an "after school - school" - that's why we usually don't start work until 3 or 4:50. Taiwanese people are very 'results' oriented.

I am currently teaching two primary classes. I use a lot of flash cards, we play games and sing a lot of songs. The kids here love to play games. Most of them are worked extremely hard in their other schools and games aren't often played (if at all). I have two 'middle school or junior high school' classes. I have to admit that these are my least favourite. Junior high kids are so hard to motivate. I have two classes with high school students. My oldest class is my favourite as there is no curriculum and I get to decide what we're going to do each day…I brought in one of my favourite songs, we listened to it and wrote the lyrics and talked about what they meant.

For each class that we teach we're given a syllabus which tells us what to teach when and what books to use. Classes are 1 1/2 hours each and you take a ten minute break mid-way through. They are always jam packed and you're lucky if you make it to the end of your plan.

I also teach two adult students in private lessons; Stella and Paul. He's the president of a steel manufacturing company. He's so smart and is learning so fast. I can't wait until we can really start to converse and understand each other.

All in all teaching is quite good and rewarding. It's an adjustment for me getting used to all of the prep work that I have to do for no pay in order to do my work. I also mark exams, create questions for telephone testing (that's when the Teacher Assistants phone the students at home and test them in English), create questions for oral exams and anything else...

I think teaching will definitely get easier as we go along. I've been taking my TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) course online and now that I'm actually in the classroom it's all making so much more sense to me!

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