Japan is a uniquely attractive teaching environment because of its rich culture and professional educational environment. You have a chance to interact with amazing semi-tropical islands, hot springs, neon lights, temples and a welcoming population.
The reason why so many teachers long after teaching English in Japan is because Japan offers a unique mix of culture, history and modernity that makes it attractive as well as a rewarding place to live and work. You will also be fascinated by the advances made in technology which makes life exciting and breath-taking.
Why Teaching English In Japan Is the First Choice Of Many?
There are many foreign countries where you can apply your knowledge of the English language. However, there is a reason many people opt for teaching English in Japan and not any other country.
- Japan is a very welcoming place where the culture, history and cuisine combine with natural beauty to give you an unforgettable experience.
- English teachers teaching English in Japan are among the highest-paid expatriates. The opportunity will allow you to earn a modest salary where you can save up to a thousand dollars or more every month while still maintaining a highly decent life. Your salary will be as high as $3,000 with free furnished housing and flight fare refunds.
- Japan gives you an opportunity to apply and be hired long before you land there. This is an assurance that by the time you get there, a job will be waiting. You will not have to be stranded there waiting to secure a job.
- You have an exciting free time exploring the mesmerizing medieval cities led by Kyoto and the ultra-modern ones like Tokyo. This is a rewarding experience, whichever way you look at it.
- Students in Japan are among the most engaging you will ever find in the world. Beyond teaching what is in the syllabus, you will be bombarded with questions in class and away from class. This is a chance to learn about their culture and their language as well.
The infrastructure in Japan is highly developed. There is a road, rail and flight network that is affordable to any destination in the country and around the world. The social economic environment is also stable and welcoming to foreigners.
This is the perfect environment for anyone working in a foreign nation. Their food is also simple, healthy and palatable. What’s more, it is a place many people have enjoyed bringing up a young family.
What qualifications do you need to teach English in Japan?
There is an official government plan called JET to help teach the Japanese people the English language. This is an exciting and attractive element for anyone intending to travel there because your services are legally provided for. In fact, the program began back in 1978 and is thus fairly developed.
Beyond teaching in public schools, there are numerous expatriates teaching English in Japan privately, especially to adults. The requirements to become a teacher are as follows:
- Be a citizen of an English speaking nation. Some of the highly desired nations include the US, UK, Australia, Canada, Ireland, South Africa and New Zealand. Citizens from other countries are also hired as long as they can demonstrate high qualification. You may be required to produce up to 12 years of relevant and documented teaching experience.
- Necessary certification – this is the certification that is recognized worldwide. It makes you a professional who can handle international students and curriculums like the International Baccalaureate and Cambridge International Examinations. Certification is an indication of possession of necessary professional skills to teach English as a second language. Some of the certifications recognized include TESOL certification (Teaching English for Speakers of Other Languages) that equips with the necessary skills to teach English anywhere.
- TEFL Certification- this is a requirement at almost all reputable private English teaching institutions in Japan. The full name is Teaching English as a Foreign Language. This program is similar to TESOL. It gives you the requisite skills to handle both children and adults taking English as a second language.
Other requirements which are not required to teaching English in Japan is for personal comfort and to cushion yourself from trouble and discomfort in a foreign country. For the purposes of settling down, you need to have some savings to the tune of $3,000 to $5,000.
This will depend on the city where you will be based. You must also be below the mandatory retirement age which is 60 years. Most institutions will prefer to hire teachers in their 20s and 30s.
You will be checked for drugs and illnesses considering that you will be engaging with the public and especially children. Higher qualification is preferred like a degree. Your criminal background will also be checked.
Udon For Thoughts on Teaching English In Japan
There is no foreign environment that has no challenges. English proficiency is frustratingly low in Japan. You will need to adapt very fast to avoid loneliness and isolation. Expect a culture shock but be prepared to learn from the hospitable people there. And if by chance you do find yourself seeking information and support, don’t forget to check out our comprehensive guide to teach English in Japan to create your free account on Educating Abroad and access lots of free resources, jobs, employers, forums and more to help make your transition easier.