Making friends while teaching in China
Opportunity China
by Elyssa
9M ago
If you’re reading this, you’re probably considering moving abroad to teach in China. You’ve likely thought of the many benefits of taking such a big step; immersing yourself in a new culture, making memories to last a lifetime, and making your CV very attractive to future employers. But you’ve also probably had some niggling doubts. What if no one can speak your language? What if you have nothing in common with anyone? What if you can’t make any friends and get so lonely you want to come home?? Well, as someone who has gone through every stage of those kinds of doubts, I can assure you that t ..read more
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5 Great Games to use as an English Teacher in China
Opportunity China
by Elyssa
9M ago
One of the hardest things about teaching kids isn’t the teaching itself, but trying to teach in a way that’s engaging and sure to keep students’ attention from wandering. Which is why, regardless of which age group you teach, games can be an incredibly useful learning tool. Having such young students meant I personally experienced a bit of a language barrier, but you definitely don’t need to be fluent in Mandarin to teach in China! The games I go on to mention were tried and tested on kindergarten age students, but can easily be adapted to a suitable difficulty for whatever age your students a ..read more
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My 5 favourite things about teaching English in China
Opportunity China
by Elyssa
9M ago
If a couple of years ago someone had told me I’d move to the other side of the world by myself to teach English with no teaching experience, and not only do it, but enjoy it, I would probably have laughed and told them they had the wrong person. However, it’s one of the best decisions I ever made. Funnily enough, it wasn’t the idea of moving to a different country where I didn’t speak the language that daunted me, but actually the prospect of teaching! I was nervous that I’d get all the way there and I’d be a rubbish teacher or that I’d hate it and want to come home immediately. Luckily, that ..read more
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Finding a place to live in China
Opportunity China
by Elyssa
9M ago
On arrival When I accepted my teaching role in China, it didn’t escape my notice that I was moving to a new country on the other side of the world with absolutely no idea where I was going to live! I had never found an apartment at home in the UK, how was I supposed to do it in a country where I didn’t even speak the language?! Luckily, it turns out I didn’t have to; I could choose to find my own apartment and be paid a monthly allowance towards it, or I’d be helped to find my apartment and it would be paid for. Both options had their appeal, but I was eager for any help offered to me! To read ..read more
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“Surely it’s impossible to be vegetarian in China?”
Opportunity China
by Elyssa
9M ago
“Surely it’s impossible to be vegetarian in China?”  This was one of the most frequent questions that cropped up in the lead up to my big move to China in 2018. And truth be told, it was a worry – like a lot of people, I had the (very wrong) preconception of being faced with nothing but meat and chicken feet. I worried that I would have to make this huge compromise of my lifestyle just to get by and not go hungry. And I’m sure there are many others who share this same worry, debating whether or not the benefits of teaching in China are really worth it if they have to concern themselves ov ..read more
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Guest Post: Reverse Culture Shock – Top 7 Things You’ll Miss After Living in China
Opportunity China
by Elyssa
9M ago
This week’s blog comes from Adam DiFrisco, a VP of Marketing who spent 5 years living between Beijing and Inner Mongolia. In this post, Adam shares some of the top things you don’t realise you’ll miss about China when you return to your home country. I recently moved back to America after living in China for 5 years, and without a doubt the prospect of going back to my home country was exciting to my very core. First let me say that I absolutely loved living in China, and under the right circumstances, I could see myself living the rest of my life there. But growing up as a Chicago sports fan ..read more
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A Typical Week Teaching in China
Opportunity China
by Elyssa
9M ago
If variety is the spice of life, then routine can be a sweet sprinkle of sugar in the face of such a massive change like moving to the other side of the world. I moved to Dongguan by myself in August 2018; Dongguan is in the Guangdong province in the south of China, just above Hong Kong. With a population of over 8.26 million, it’s a thriving populus with a perfect blend of rural and urban living, not to mention incredible weather. I worked for a state school teaching kindergarten pupils with ages ranging from 2-6. After such a drastic lifestyle change, I felt like I needed a touch of stabilit ..read more
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Guest Post: Do you need to know Chinese to teach English in China?
Opportunity China
by Guest
9M ago
TLDR: It is possible to teach English in China’s first-tier cities (Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen) without learning Mandarin, provided you’re willing to forgo most cultural immersion experiences. It’s possible to live in an expat bubble, speaking English day to day. Living in China as an English teacher in other cities can offer a more immersive language learning environment, but can be initially challenging if you don’t speak Chinese, and you’ll need patience and good humour in order to communicate. Regardless of city, a little Chinese language ability will make your existence sign ..read more
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Teacher Guest Post – Shenzhen: The Bright Lights of a Trailblazer City
Opportunity China
by Guest
9M ago
Although no official list exists, cities in mainland China are informally categorised into four tiers. The Chinese media has persistently made reference to this classification system in its various outlets and publications. Major cities you’ve doubtless heard of such as Beijing and Shanghai fall into the “tier one” bracket whereas those in the “tier two” bracket include locations less familiar to Westerners such as Hangzhou, Suzhuo and Chongqing. (Quick note: I’m not implying that cities in lower tiers are less desirable to visit or live in. I fully intend to visit the aforementioned locatio ..read more
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Teacher Guest Post: The Benefits of Gaining International Experience by Working in China
Opportunity China
by Guest
9M ago
Two years have passed since I finished teaching in China and moved away from Hangzhou. I have worked several jobs in different sectors, lived in two more countries, and as I continue to explore my career path, I am amazed at how valuable my time in China was. When I signed on to be a Middle School Teacher, I had dreams of working in politics, journalism, or pursuing further education and was unsure how living and teaching in China would benefit a career other than teaching. However, it is clear that what I gained from working in China was not just teaching experiences, but an international ex ..read more
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