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English teachers in Korea

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bardofages7604
Been Around a Bit
Posts: 20
Joined: July 27th, 2010 10:49 am

English teachers in Korea

Postby bardofages7604 » February 14th, 2011 4:44 pm

Looking for insight from anyone teaching Adult English on one of the split schedules, like early morning back in the evening. Thinking about doing that since I've never been really great at teaching kids...if I'm going to travel abroad to teach I think I should stick with the audience I'm used too. Let me know, thanks!!

johndramey
New in Town
Posts: 12
Joined: May 17th, 2009 11:27 pm

Re: English teachers in Korea

Postby johndramey » March 30th, 2011 10:53 am

bardofages7604 wrote:Looking for insight from anyone teaching Adult English on one of the split schedules, like early morning back in the evening. Thinking about doing that since I've never been really great at teaching kids...if I'm going to travel abroad to teach I think I should stick with the audience I'm used too. Let me know, thanks!!


Hey there bard,

I'm currently teaching English to adults on a split shift. I tend to do one on one, but I have easy access to people who have taught groups. I've also taught children, so please feel free to leave any questions here that you may have. I'll try to help you out as much as possible.

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bardofages7604
Been Around a Bit
Posts: 20
Joined: July 27th, 2010 10:49 am

Postby bardofages7604 » April 4th, 2011 9:01 am

Well...this may be kind of broad, but could you just give me your feelings on teaching English in Korea. I haven't talked directly with anyone that has taught there so maybe you could give me some of your personal pros and cons. Also, maybe some pros and cons between teaching adults and children?

I appreciate any help you can give!

johndramey
New in Town
Posts: 12
Joined: May 17th, 2009 11:27 pm

Postby johndramey » April 5th, 2011 6:22 pm

bardofages7604 wrote:Well...this may be kind of broad, but could you just give me your feelings on teaching English in Korea. I haven't talked directly with anyone that has taught there so maybe you could give me some of your personal pros and cons. Also, maybe some pros and cons between teaching adults and children?

I appreciate any help you can give!


No worries. I'm actually at the job now, so I'll write what I can during my break time. Keep in mind that I teach 1-on-1 business English, I have limited group class experience with adults. I taught children for 2 years in private schools, so I don't know about the public schools all that much.

Basic pros and cons:

Adults
Pros:
No punishing them, you aren't a police man and they are (generally) there to study
Much more relaxed, usually adults will be willing to work with you about whatever you need doing.
You'll build good relationships with a lot of your students.
Pay is generally higher, although you pay your own rent.
Pay raises
Vacation days that you can request

Cons
The schedule can be a killer. Your hours will probably be 7-11am and 5:30-9:30pm, and usually you will be required to work 2 Saturdays a month.
Paying your own rent can cut into your pay quite a bit
You'll get students that feel they should be improving simply because they are paying money.

Up to opinion things
You're going to be 50% teacher / 50% therapist. I don't know why it is, but it's really true.
You should approach this like a service industry job, you need to please the student by being friendly and caring.

Children
Pros:
Free housing. This lets you take home more per month than you will your first 6months/year teaching adults
Hours, usually the longest hours you'll have is 9:30am-7:30pm
Not really needing to be too adept a teacher, it's 99% daycare

Cons:
You're going to get sick, a lot. Kids are dirty.
You're going to have to discipline children, a lot. Like I said, 99% daycare.
During the vacation months you actually work more than normal.
No vacation days aside from national holidays.
Parents, especially housewives, will make your job difficult.

Up to opinion things:
Kids. Seriously, when I started I loved kids. 2 years later and seeing a kid from the age of 5-18 gives me PTSD.
Hours. The hours seem better on paper, but you actually don't have that much more time for anything than teaching adults.
Sanity. You'll probably lose it at some point in your contract.
Coworkers. In my experience people who teach children tend to be less professional/responsible. As such you'll probably have a time when a coworker runs out on his/her contract leaving you working overtime for a month or so.


I should be totally honest and say that a lot of the "up to opinion things" are simply things that I've felt. Also, you gotta treat this like a job. Too many people come to South Korea expecting it to be a paid vacation. They don't do their job correctly, and make all the rest of us foreigners look really bad. If you do decide to come to Korea it'll be in your best interest to learn some Korean. Most people don't bother and, again, it looks really bad for foreigners. I gotta head back to work (student is coming in 5 minutes), but if you got any more questions or concerns please let me know!

bardofages7604
Been Around a Bit
Posts: 20
Joined: July 27th, 2010 10:49 am

Postby bardofages7604 » April 11th, 2011 8:00 am

Thanks for the insight! I didn't know that teaching adults I would have to pay my own rent, so that is a good to know. I do plan on taking this on as a job. I actually intend on making a career out of teaching English as a language. The traveling to South Korea I'm hoping will serve me in multiple ways. For one I love the Korean language, so living there will only help improve my skills. I'd consider myself close to intermediate (not quite there yet), but I'd love to become fluent. Secondly, it will give me experience teaching English as a language so if I travel elsewhere or return to the States I will have practical experience. Plus living in another country will be a cultural experience.

As for teaching children, that's about on par with what I expected to hear. Though, I may have to teach children for a year or so until I am adjusted to life in Korea. Having my rent paid would be helpful, even worth a little loss of sanity.

On another note, universities require masters degrees to teach English correct? It's an idea I have tossed around, both getting my masters and teaching at university...a decision that is still left in the future haha. Need to finish the bachelor's first. However, I have heard teaching at university while difficult with hours and work load and such is actually the most rewarding. I'm not sure if you know any college level teachers.

Anyways,
Thanks again for all the information! Hope to hear from you soon!


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