The Advantages of Becoming a Teacher
There are many options to go teach in Asia, and one of the hottest places to go currently is South Korea. Many people are seeking an alternative work environment, some even go so far as to travel to another country. Teaching English provides both the opportunity for one to travel and live abroad while supporting themselves financially in addition to many other advantages that could create life-long benefits.
If anything has been a concern on many peoples' mind, it's the topic of money. Fortunately this is one thing you should not have to worry about when going to teach in Korea. As a teacher, your living expenses should be minimal compared to most countries, for example U.S. and Canada, and the money that you make from your job will be more than enough for you save a good percentage of your monthly salary.
There are many people that pursue this area of expertise for the specific reason of saving, and gaining money. It's quite common that you'll make about USD $1700 a month, and although this may not seem much to some, the amount of money that your able to save, has a greater potential of outweighing the amount of money that you spend if you were comparing the cost to back home.
Food is cheap, and it's quite common to eat out, at reasonably cheap costs (no tips or additional sales tax to worry about). You'll most likely be walking everywhere you go, if not, you can usually catch a cheap cab ride, bus, or subway to your destination, each saving you the cost of gas back home.
In most cases your stay will be paid for, with a rent free apartment, only having to worry about utilities and maintenance fees for things like upkeep and garbage.
Learn a new language
Hey, since you are in Korea, you will have the opportunity to learn a new language! Not to say that this is an easy task to accomplish, but given enough effort and time, you will be amazed by how much and what things you have learned. I would suggest to start out with the alphabet; it's very easy to learn, is phonetic, and won't require much time to familiarize yourself with.
Not everyone who travels to teach English is an English major or linguist specialist, but since you will be spending much of your time conversing and teaching English, you are bound to discover new things about your native language that you have not known or noticed before, such as certain idioms, grammar rules, or why so many words aren't spelled the way they are pronounced.
English and korean aren't the only languages that you will encounter when living abroad. Because you will be most likely faced in foreign situations where verbal communication won't be as useful, you will be given ample opportunities to demonstrate your body-language skills!
Travel to nearby countries
Korea is in a great location to explore other parts of Asia. By being in such a central location, you will be able to find many convenient connections and direct flights to countries such as China, Japan, Thailand, and Taiwan! The cost of course will be cheaper than what you would back home because of the close proximity of the countries in relation to traveling across the globe.
Have fun teaching kids!
Most likely you will be assigned to teaching children English, usually in kindergarten or elementary school. This can be both a rewarding and challenging experience. You will quickly discover some of the many joys of becoming a teacher as you slowly begin to uncover your inner child. You'll quickly begin to notice your influence on the students you are teaching, whether it be a notice of them repeating phrases you say often or acquiring new mannerisms from you.
Depending on the type of school you teach at (private or public), and the structure of your classes, it may be possible that your students see you for most of the day, in that case you'll become quite the influential role model, and in many cases a good friend.
Make new friends
Chances are, you won't be the only English teacher around, and if that were the case, you will most likely be an easy bus ride away from a neighboring city with other foreigners. During your new adventure abroad you'll have the opportunity to meet and greet other teachers from various countries, working in different towns and cities throughout the country, increasing your international network.
In addition to the other teachers that you'll meet, you will also be able to have many opportunities to create friendships with the locals of your community. This is another rewarding experience, as you have a chance to gain a greater cultural understanding of your new surrounding culture, as well as the potential to gain life-long friendships.
Learn more about Korea
Now that you are in the country, here is your chance to gain a first-hand perspective on the culture and way of life. Opportunities to explore more of the history, language, culture, and way of life are enhanced dramatically while being present in the country. You will have a chance to taste the many flavors of Korean cuisine, explore the various nature and mountain trails, and listen to various Kpop artists.
Take it upon yourself to explore various areas of interest according to your particular interests. Eventually you will have some time to yourself to explore different aspects of your new surroundings.
Learn about yourself
One of the most important aspects that you may face when living abroad, especially if you have not lived in another country before, will be the opportunity to grow and learn more about yourself. Maybe you will learn a hobby, discover a new talent, or feel a greater sense of independence about yourself. There are plenty of things and opportunities to be had while abroad, and after taking that first step forward, your life may never be the same.