Wednesday, April 29, 2015

What People are Searching For

Back into the Archives

Going back way into the archives to help people find what they're searching for. Some pretty recent stuff too. Anyway, here are what people have been looking for in the past month:

If I Had a Million Dollars Lesson Plan. Perfect for when you're studying the second conditional.

University Jobs in Korea

The Best Teaching Jobs in South Korea

University Korea Textbook

Korea vs Taiwan ESL

Serial Podcast ESL

For lesson plans and ESL activities delivered straight to your inbox every week, sign-up for my mailing list here. As a bonus, when I finish my next book in a couple weeks about ESL Speaking Activities and Games for Teenagers and Adults, anyone on my list at that time will get it free.

Resume to Apply for Korean University Jobs

A short video about a mistake that people often make when applying for university jobs in South Korea: a too complicated resume.

For all the details about getting a university job in Korea, including a resume template check out this book on Amazon:

How to Get a University Job in South Korea: The English Teaching Job of Your Dreams

Sunday, April 26, 2015

University Jobs in South Korea

South Korea is a last-minute culture; I call it the "bali-bali syndrome." Check out this short video for how it relates to your search for a uni job in Korea.

For even more cultural tips to help you get a job teaching English in South Korea, check out: How to Get a University Job in South Korea: The English Teaching Job of Your Dreams

5 Things You Should Know if you Want to Teach English in China

Teaching ESL in China

This is a guest post from Terence Stamp over at Teach English Overseas. He teaches English in Beijing and I really appreciate him taking the time to give us this useful information since teaching in China is truly something that I know very little about. Thanks Terence and without further ado, here are the top 5 things you need to know about teaching ESL in China:

Pollution in China

You likely heard stories about the air quality already before you have even come to China. Everything you have heard is true...and worse. It's not uncommon to see people with surgical masks walking around. Some people have weather apps on their phone to know what the tem is going to be like, or whether if it will rain that day. In China, people commonly have apps that tell them the air pollution index for any given day.

I wish I could stop there. You see, China still uses coal for most of its energy needs. China doesn't have an EPA the way the United States does. So many large industries don't care about the environment the way the west does. Nor do they have the experience and technology to regulate it. The other day we had a serious sandstorm in Beijing, and we don't even have deserts nearby. Combine that with the fact that Beijing is surrounded by mountains that trap the pollution and smog for days at a time.

You should never drink the tap water here. Doing so is an open invitation to become ill. Many residences and businesses here use water machines with the large upside down water containers on them. I'm not trying to scare you from coming here, but you should know that it can be alarming for a newcomer.

Finding ESL Work  in China

Now for some great news. Need a job in China? Well, it doesn't take long before you'll be put to work. The simple fact of the matter is that there are more jobs available than there are teachers to work those jobs. Two of my favorite sites to look are on Craigslist (look in the jobs>education category) and ESL Cafe (click jobs at the top and click on China jobs board).

The most common types of work consist of three choices. The first is the language mill which consists of night and weekend work. No apartment or insurance will typically be provided, but the pay is nice enough to offset those issues. The next option is working in a government school, such as a university or even public or high school. You will get housing and insurance here, but it's offset by low pay and a large amount of students per class. The last option, my own favorite by a country mile, is working in a kindergarten. You only work weekdays, with no nights and weekends. The pay is pretty good, the amount of students is low, and you spend all day with a single class. Unlike the first two options, you will have many classes, and so it makes it hard to get to know all your students. With a kindergarten it's not like that, but perhaps working with young children is a negative for you.
English Teaching Visas for China

Ahh visas. That perennial issue and thorn in the side. I was under the completely mistaken assumption that work visas were not necessary or required to teach here. But let me clarify. Yes, technically, you are required to have a visa to be legally employed as an English teacher in China. However, many teachers are in China teaching in any case. If all the teachers who were here illegally were to leave, you would notice a significant population decrease for sure.

So what's it take to get a work visa? Well, you need an offer of employment from a school that is set up with the government to offer them. Also, when I first got here 4 years ago, an FBI police report was not a requirement. Now it is. An FBI police report is gotten by supplying your fingerprints and waiting a month or more to get the results back. Also, you are required to have a university diploma, BA or higher, just like most everywhere else in Asia.

Holidays for ESL Teachers

I love this aspect of teaching in China. There are so many holidays, and the best part is that they are all paid. A complete list can be found at but the big two are Spring Festival (also known as the Chinese New Year) which typically happens in the first month or two of a year and lasts 1 week. The other is National Day which is always October 1-7. April, May and June also have holidays, but they are shorter.

Depending on where you decide to teach, you may end up getting up to a month or more off for Spring Festival as well as the summer months when no school is in session. Some schools will even pay you a bonus for the month to travel with. And speaking of travel, there is a lot to see and do in China. The history is amazing, and many of the sights are extremely beautiful. There is the Great Wall, Tiananmen, and the Forbidden City in Beijing. Xi'an has the terracotta warriors and not too distant is the famed Shaolin Temple near Dengfeng. You will not be lacking for places to see.

Finances for ESL Teachers in China

More specifically, I want to talk about something you will hardly see discussed anywhere else online. You see, China has imposed money transfer limits on foreigners. This is not a good thing. Years ago, I was able to send effectively any amount. Then one day I went to the bank and suddenly learned that the new limit was now $500. Then even more recently, I tried to send a Western Union, and was declined. Thankfully, my Chinese wife has no such limits (they can send up to about $50,000 per year) and so she helped me.

But if you have student loans you are paying every month, then these transfer limits can pose a significant burden to your economics. Even if all you are doing is sending the occasional savings home for when you return, then you will be met with obstacles. Also, never forget that as a US citizen, you are compelled to file a tax return every year, even if you do not reside in the US. However, the Foerign Earned Income Exclusion (FEIE) allows you to earn just over $100,000 every year tax free. So as an English teacher, you will never have to worry about hitting that limit.

I have tried to my best to discuss important topics with you if you are considering coming to the middle kingdom to teach. I think it can be rewarding to spend time in China, and doing so will never hurt your resume. Especially if you take the time to learn Chinese, which I do not consider exceptionally difficult to do if you apply yourself. You will want to order VPN service as well, since the "great firewall" will block access to everyone's favorite Facebook and YouTube. I am open to any questions that you might have, so feel free to contact me. 

About Terence Stamp

 I grew up in Iowa and spent most of my life there. I got the travel bug in 2008 and by 2011 I was ready to live overseas full time. Since I am not independently wealthy and still needed to work, I decided to begin teaching English. Little did I know how the industry would suck me in. Now 4 years later, I am still teaching and interested in helping others to learn how to teach. Because of this I started Teach English Overseas where I provide information for those interested in becoming English teachers abroad. You may contact me at

Saturday, April 25, 2015

39 No-Prep/Low-Prep ESL Speaking Activities for Teenagers and Adults

esl speaking activities
 ESL Speaking Activities for Teenagers and Adults

Good news my readers! My editor and I have been working away like busy beavers writing and editing a book filled with 39 of my favorite ESL speaking activities for adults. The book also has some teaching tips, advice for teaching very low level speaking classes, lesson plans, my favorite ESL speaking websites (besides this one!) and other goodness; it should be done in less than a month.

I plan to give the book away for free but only to members of my email list. When you join the list, you get an email about every week with some of my favorite ESL game and activity ideas (speaking, warm-ups/icebreakers, writing, etc.), websites I use to plan my own classes, lesson plans I’ve designed, book recommendations, and other good stuff.

Sign-up now. Free book coming soon!



Characteristics of the Top University Jobs in South Korea

A short video for those looking for a university job in Korea and trying to decide if their job offer is a good one, or not.  I talk about the ideal job in terms of salary, location, vacation, working hours and office situation.  And of course, I have way more details in the book, How to Get a University Job in South Korea: The English Teaching Job of Your Dreams.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Will the Celta help you get a University Job in Korea?

All the details about whether of not the Cambridge Celta English teaching certification will help you get a university job, or not in this short video:

Even more details about the Celta and Delta as they relate to university jobs in South Korea can be found in the book:
How to Get a University Job in South Korea: The English Teaching Job of Your Dreams

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Do you Need to Speak Korean to work at a University in South Korea?

A common question I get from readers is whether or not you need to speak Korean in order to work at a Korean university. Watch this short video to find out the answer.

And of course, don't forget to sign up for my mailing list if you haven't already. More than 40 ESL games and activities, lesson plans, news of my upcoming projects and a whole lot more.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Thursday, April 16, 2015

New EPIK Requirements for 2015

New EPIK Requirements for 2015
EPIK is the official government program that places native English teachers into Korean public schools. While there have been significant cuts in recent years (almost all middle and high school positions), plenty of teachers are still recruited.

New EPIK Program Changes for 2015 and Beyond

Check the article (from Korvia Recruiting), but here are the highlights:

English and Linguistics Majors

Previously, English and Linguistics majors did not need to have a TEFL certificate in order to start at a higher pay scale. That exemption is now eliminated.

My thoughts: good! Even though someone studied English or linguistics does not mean they actually know what they're doing in the classroom.

TEFL Certificates

Starting in 2016, only TEFL certificates with a minimum of 20 in-class hours will be accepted.

My thoughts: good! Those only online certificates are basically worthless and anyone who is serious about being a real ESL teacher should actually just do the CELTA. Why not change it to a 120-hour certificate?

GPA Requirements

EPIK has come out and officially stated that they will require a 2.5 GPA in order to apply. SMOE (Seoul public school positions) will require a 2.7.

My thoughts: why is it not even higher? Don't we want academically successful people in the classroom?  The ones who know what it takes to succeed and not just scrape by?

FBI Checks

It is now easier to get an acceptable FBI check if you're from the USA.

My thoughts: good! Anything that reduces the paperwork stress is a good thing.

South African Applicants

South African applicants are now required to submit official proof that their middle and high school education was in English. 

My thoughts: why not people from Quebec too?!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

It's that time of year: ESL Speaking Tests!

ESL Speaking Tests
ESL Speaking Tests
It's that time of year again: speaking tests!  I've blogged about speaking tests already over on my other site, ESL Speaking.

ESL speaking test rubric
ESL speaking tests- 3 ways to do it

But, I will add this. This semester, I set up my tests so that students talk to 1-1 with a random partner (chosen by me) and with random topics from a list of 10 (chosen by me). My role is just that of an observer.

Ideally, I never like to do more than assign partners, hand out topics, tell which student to begin and then signal a topic change and then the end of the test. But, I will intervene if necessary if one partner is clearly weaker than the other one.

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The weaker student's mark is never in question-low, but for the higher level student, it can be hard to show their true abilities if the weak student is not asking them any questions, or is asking terrible ones. In this case, I'll interrupt and ask the higher level student a couple difficult questions and see how they handle it. If they handle them well, then they'll get a higher score. If not, they'll probably fall into the mid-range category and not get the highest marks.

I would never want to punish a higher level student with a low score simply because their partner was bad at asking them interesting, or appropriate questions.

Join the Facebook group: Foreign Teachers in Korean Universities.

Grading: A Pro Tip

pro tip
Grading: a Pro Tip
If you keep track of your grades in a spreadsheet of some kind, this does not apply to you.

However, if you are like me and keep track of your grades on those paper attendance sheets your university gives you, then heed this advice. As an aside, I don't do the spreadsheet thing because my uni, quite ridiculously wants everything done on paper and I refuse to do the work twice.

But, onward to the grading pro tip. Every single time you enter a grade of some sort, photocopy the paper and stash it away in some drawer, or file folder, either at home or at work. Then, if you lose your main folder that you carry around to class every day through some unforeseen disaster, your disaster will actually be a whole lot less terrible.

I've never actually lost my folder, but you never know.

If you need some new ideas for your classes, sign up to get more than 40 ESL games and activities, delivered straight to your inbox.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Teaching English in South Korea: Do you Recommend it?

Teach English in South Korea
Teaching English in South Korea

I had a question from a reader about whether or not I'd recommend teaching English in Korea. Obviously, I've been living here for 10 years and have been happy enough to stay, but I'm not sure I'd necessarily recommend it as heartily today as I would have back when I first got there.

 Here's Why Korea Doesn't Get my Hearty Recommendation

1. Salaries to teach English in Korea have gone down significantly, in terms of real dollars  because while inflation has increased significantly, salaries have remained stagnant. 10 years ago, 2.2 was a normal starting hagwon wage. Today, it's basically the same.  For some solid advice on finances for ESL teachers, check out my book: The Wealthy English Teacher: Teach, Travel, and Secure Your Financial Future.

2. There are fewer good TEFL jobs in Korea these days. Even 5 years ago, public school jobs were plentiful but after government cutbacks, these jobs are few and far between and competition to get them is fierce. While there are some annoying things about working in a public school (co-teachers!), they are traditionally quite good jobs due to the low working hours, decent vacation time and the paid in full every month guarantee.

Qualifications and competition has increased for university jobs in Korea, such that it's difficult for someone without a master's degree and a couple years experience teaching adults or high school students to get the job. These are by far the best teaching jobs in Korea, with the exception of corporate jobs, of which there are very few. For advice on getting a uni job in South Korea, check out my other book, How to Get a University Job in South Korea: The English Teaching Job of Your Dreams.

Korea isn't a Bad Choice Though

That said, if you want to teach English overseas, then Korea is not a bad choice. The money-saving potential is still there, especially if you do private teaching (but it's illegal, so of course I'd never recommend it or do it myself).  Most teachers can expect to save around $1000 US/ month if their lifestyle isn't too extravagant.

And, it certainly is a lot easier to live in Korea than it was 10 years ago in terms of social attitudes since Koreans are getting a lot more used to foreigners, although racism does still exist (as it does in any country).

In terms of availability of all things Western, you can pretty much get anything you want just by going to the local supermarket or clicking the mouse button a few times. Gone are the days of trekking to Itaewon in Seoul with an empty backpack to go to the English bookstore and foreign food mart.

In terms of English, Korea is getting better and better as the years go by such that it is normal that at least one person speaks passable English at any place you might want to go.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

4 Hot Discussion Topics for Korean University Students

discussion topics
Discussion Topics for Korean Uni Students
This past week in my advanced conversation class, we've been talking about rules and regulations using the passive form and Touchstone 4, Unit 5. For homework, I had my students make a short video (3+ minutes) answering the questions, "What 2 things should people be encouraged to do to make it a better place. And, what should they be encouraged not to do?"

I just finished watching all the videos and the four topics that the students mentioned almost without fail were:

1. Smoking in public places.

2. The lax sex crime laws, especially if drinking is involved.

3. Trash on the streets and lack of trash cans.

4. Cutting in line at the bus station, bank, etc.

So, if you're looking for hot topics for your uni classes in Korea, these are some that your students would probably enjoy and be willing to talk about.

Graded Language: We Need to Use it!

graded language
Comprehensible Input for ESL Students

There's a post over on another website of mine, ESL Speaking which may be of interest to you. It's about using graded language in order to help our students actually learn English.

Graded Language: Use It!

Cheating in Korean Universities

cheating south korea
Cheating in South Korean Universities

Cheating is rampant in Korean universities because there just isn't the stigma surrounding it like there is any university in a western country, nor are there any real consequences when you get caught. Certainly, you'll never get expelled.

Students will wholesale plagiarize an essay, or come to a test with answers written all the way up their arm and once they get caught, they'll expect the teacher to give them a second chance. It's so ridiculous and it's part of the reason why Korean university degrees aren't worth the paper that they're written on. Any serious Korean academic, or even those who actually want to get a job once they're done their PhD would never consider doing it in Korea and instead head to the USA or England.

(Join the Facebook group: Foreign Teachers in Korean Universities)

Anyway, that's a whole rant for another day. Here's what happened today. I was grading essays and I found a perfect one. Like a flawless 5 paragraph academic essay. The thing is, it was from the worst student in the class- the one who actually refuses to join with a partner to do a brief comparing of ideas, or the one who came to me on the first day of my conversation class last semester and told me that she's bad at English and doesn't want to actually have to talk to anybody in the class.

Off to Google and after about 10 seconds of searching (using the "exact" phrase feature of Google advanced search), I found it.

How do I deal with it?  I'd love to give her an F in the class, and for her to get expelled from the university. Instead, I gave her a 0/10 and I'll say no when she inevitably begs for another chance. Sigh. To do any more would be met with baffled looks from the admins and higher ups at my uni when they wondered why I'd possibly be making a big deal out of this and they'd think that I was actually being too harsh and tell me to let her do it again.

Want my job when I roll on outta here?  How to Get a University Job in South Korea: The English Teaching Job of Your Dreams.

Friday, April 10, 2015

It was....intense

interlocking puzzle
Crossword Puzzles for ESL Class

For my very advanced level conversation class, I rarely play games or do things like puzzles since they are extremely self-motivated students and are very happy to straight up study. But, one day only before the midterm exam, I had a review day. I used Discovery's Free Puzzle-maker site to build a crossword puzzle focused on the grammar and vocab that would be on the midterm exam.

The puzzle was really hard and I have to say that is was the most intense 40 minutes of almost my entire life. Maybe it helped that I gave out a little prize to the top 3 pairs?  Anyway, used sparingly, puzzles can be an excellent change of pace in your classroom and the introverted types usually love it.

Get more than 40 ESL games and activities, as well as lesson plans and other goodness delivered straight to your inbox. Sign up here.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Quitting Mid-Semester at a University in Korea

Quitting Mid-Contract in Korea

I ran across this thread over on ESL Cafe. Even though I usually avoid that cesspool of misinformation that is Dave's Korean forums, I had a bit of free time between classes.

Quitting Uni Mid Semester

"A friend of mine who works at a mainland uni has been told that next semester his work hours will be increased, his pay frozen and housing assistance cut off. He is not very happy about this kind of treatment and is thinking about quitting mid-semester. He asked me about the ramifications of this. He has an F visa. Any thoughts?"

My response: quitting mid-semester is never a good strategy. Unless you work at a university, you probably have no idea how badly this screws over your university. Like quite literally, there will be classes without a teacher and especially if it's a small place, there might actually be nobody else who can take your classes. Your coworkers will hate you and you'll be the new hated guy in town once word gets around.

Plus, consider the grading situation. How could those students possibly get a fair grade at the end of the semester?

So, considering how badly this guy is screwing them over, I can almost guarantee that the university is going to go to any length to screw him over in return. Like any length. Phone calls to immigration? Terrible references (this one is a given). Phoning every other uni in town to tell them to avoid this guy?  Like there really is no limit to the badness that can come from this.

Even though this guy's place is going from good to bad, as long as they don't try to take these benefits from him now, mid-semester, he should stick with it until the end. And it doesn't sound like the bad things are happening now, only at some point in the future.

And, the ethics of it. You signed a contract for a certain pay for a certain number of hours for a certain period of time. You should honor that contract as long as the uni is honoring their end. Just because your uni is reducing the terms of your next contract, doesn't mean that you should break this one. It's just kind of ridiculous, actually and I don't have a lot of sympathy for the guy, at all.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

The Best Teaching Jobs in South Korea

best job
Best ESL Jobs in Korea

Quite a few people are finding their way to this site searching on Google for "best teaching jobs in Korea."

Here's the deal:

University Jobs in Korea

Uni jobs in Korea are some of the best jobs you can get in the ESL teaching world in terms of amount of hours worked, vacation time and benefits (often free housing, a decent pension plan, etc).  But they are not that easy to get, especially without a Masters degree.  Check out this book, How to Get a University Job in South Korea: The English Teaching Job of Your Dreamsfor some solid advice (from me!)

You should also check TEFL Tips-Best Jobs in Korea, and Profs Abroad, where you can get access to those hard to find uni jobs in Korea that are not listed in the regular places.  Also join this Facebook group: Foreign Teachers in Korean Universities, which occasionally has some prime jobs listed on it.

Public School Jobs

Back in the good ole days in Korea, public school jobs were plentiful. These days, almost every foreigner working at a middle school or high school has been cut and even elementary positions are in decline. So, if you're a newbie (or even oldie) to Korea, I wouldn't necessarily count on this as a good long-term option. It's simply too dependent on the whims of the Korean government. That said, if you can get one of these jobs they are often ideal due to a decent amount of vacation time and many of your hours at "work" will consist of just hanging out and not really doing that much. Plus, you have a co-teacher, so little in the way of "actual" teaching in terms of discipline or being solely responsible for what goes down in a classroom is required.

Hagwon Jobs

Korea has a bit of a bad reputation in the ESL teaching world and it's because of sketchy hagwons. It's a case of buyer beware and while there are some good ones out there who honor contracts and don't rip off teachers, you'll have to do your research to find them. The best sources for up to date information about a school you're checking out are:

Facebook: Hagwon Blacklist

Koreabridge: List of Korea related Facebook Groups.

Go to this site and find some of the groups in the city you are thinking about going to. Ask anyone if they're heard of hagwon XYZ and you can almost always get some information that way.

Talking to the current teacher is recommended, but it can a bit of a crap-shoot because maybe the director is standing right there next to them as they're talking to you. Or, they're worried about getting their bonus money or plane ticket and don't want to hard their chances at getting these things by giving an honest review. It's sometimes better to ask for a teacher's email address who has already finished a contract there.

Monday, April 6, 2015

ESL Speaking Games and Activities

ESL speaking
ESL Speaking Games and Activities

Inspired by the success of my first two books, How to Get a University Job in South Korea: The English Teaching Job of Your Dreamsand The Wealthy English Teacher: Teach, Travel, and Secure Your Financial Future, I've started work on a third one about ESL Speaking Games and Activities.

It'll contain around 50 of my go-to games and activities that I use in my own classes and I've tried to include lots of good stuff for teachers who teach young kids as well (I got my start way back in the day teaching kindy, so I know how it is!). I also have a few sample lesson plans for intermediate-advanced level adult conversation classes and some general teaching tips to keep in mind when you're teaching ESL Speaking.

If you want to get 40 ESL games and activities for all skills, delivered straight to your inbox, as well as be the first to know when I finish my latest book, sign up here:

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Sunday, April 5, 2015

Reader Question: I look Very Young- What Should I do?

fake glasses
Young Looking-Korean University Job?

A reader question from someone who is a young looking 32 year old. He wants to know if he should attempt to look older through things like facial hair or fake glasses in order to get a job at a Korean university.

My answer: no. If you're 32 years old, I wouldn't worry about it. If you were in your 20's and had this same problem, then I'd recommend taking some action. The ideal age for a Korean university to hire someone is late 20's to late 40's, and I have a feeling that even with this looking young situation, you'd probably fit into that range.

Of course, for even more advice on how to get that prime university job in South Korea, check out:
How to Get a University Job in South Korea: The English Teaching Job of Your Dreams

Friday, April 3, 2015

5 Tips for Teaching Difficult Grammar

Difficult Grammar Teaching
Reader Question: Teaching Difficult Units

This question comes from a friend of mine, Daniel who I did the CELTA with back in the day. He's leading a seminar on "Teaching Difficult Units" and was wondering if I had any tips. He's a stellar teacher (better than me?!) and I'll sure he'll do fabulous without my help, but I'll do my best to answer his question.

My Experience Teaching Difficult English Grammar

My background in the area is that I teach English major students at a top-level university in Busan, South Korea so by the time the students get to their third or fourth year, the stuff I'm teaching is pretty intense. Like modal passive verbs, causative get + have, past modals, passive for present continuous and present perfect, etc. For the most part, my students have not been exposed to this kind of stuff before, except very briefly in passing so I have to be solid on it and can't rely on their background knowledge. In addition, it's usually stuff I've never taught before which makes it even more difficult.

Top 5 Tips to Teach Difficult Stuff (in no particular order)

Context  (topic). You should always have a context for anything that you teach, something by which your students can hang their grammar hats on. Teaching isolated grammar or vocabulary without giving your students a situation in which they can use it is a huge disservice and is actually a waste of time. 

Research. I've found that you don't need to know all the intricate details of a specific grammar concept before teaching it, but you should be extremely proficient. I do three things to research: use the textbook and make sure I know that section inside and out. Then, I'll look online for what other teachers have said or written, either for other teachers, or usually more helpfully, students. The British Council puts out lots of good stuff for difficult grammar concepts. I'll also check YouTube and see if there are any helpful videos of other teachers explaining the concept. Don't copy them, but see what works and what doesn't and take the best stuff for your own lesson. Very occasionally, I'll run across a video that is amazing, and I'll show it in class (but it's rare!).

Simple is Best.  I'm a huge believer in simple always being best, basically in everything in my life. This especially applies to teaching difficult concepts and in my experience, it is best to present only the basics and then let the students figure out the rest on their own, with a bit of help from you. Presenting all the ins and outs of every single point at the start is often too overwhelming.

Student-Centered is Ideal.  Related to point #3 is the idea of making your lesson student-centered. Can you do a self-discovery style of grammar teaching? Can you do a very short presentation of less than 5 minutes? Can you get the students comparing answers together instead of with you?  It will be more difficult for the students (and for you to set-up), but once they get it, they'll get it and will retain it for a whole lot longer.

Review. Whenever I introduce something that is quite difficult, there are always students who don't really "get it." That's okay and part of teaching. I try my best to help them in that class, but in the next class, I will ALWAYS review the concept. I'll briefly explain things, one more time in a slightly different way and will usually pair it with a different context. Then, I'll have the students work together with a different partner than the previous class on some sort of activity.

For more fabulously helpful teaching tips delivered straight to your inbox at regular intervals, sign-up here:

Resume to Apply for Korean University Jobs

how to get a university job in south korea
Resumes for University Jobs in South Korea

 A reader question about resumes for applying for university jobs in South Korea:

"Regarding a resume - In your book's sample resume you didn't include an 'Objective' section.  Should I omit this?  Or personalize it for each uni I'm applying to?"

Readers: I have indeed included a sample resume template in my book,  How to Get a University Job in South Korea: The English Teaching Job of Your Dreamsso check that out if you're looking for a uni job in South Korea. I think you'll find it helpful.

But, onwards to the question. I didn't include an "objective" section because all the most current stuff I read about resumes said not to include it and that's it's kind of old-style.

I think the whole thing is pretty ridiculous anyway, especially for an ESL teacher-like isn't your objective to get a job at a South Korean university (or company XYZ)? Anything that you put besides that would basically just be a lie. I guess you could say something like, "I want to help students learn English." But, doesn't everyone who teaches ESL?  It's just so obvious and fake and ridiculous that I refuse to put it in on my resume.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Reviews of The Wealthy English Teacher

Wealthy English Teacher
The Wealthy English Teacher

Thanks to everyone who has checked out my second book, The Wealthy English Teacher: Teach, Travel, and Secure Your Financial Futureover on Amazon in both digital and print formats.

So far, the reviews have been very positive. Here they are:

Alex (on Goodreads): "I didn’t expect this book to be so well-written. The author really knows what she is talking about and speaks from personal experience. She doesn't promise to make you rich or to get rich quickly, but rather gives you tons of advice to secure your financial future for the long run. This book is very detailed with excellent financial advice. Her passion really shows through in this book."

Neil (on Amazon): "This book provides sound advice for expat teachers (or any profession actually) to get their financials in order from the other side of the world. It provides an easy to follow step-by-step plan for even the most financial illiterate to find success with. My only criticism is that it it seems too easy work! It's a steal for only $3. I wish I had read this book many many years ago."

Sharon (on Amazon): "Jackie takes you step-by-step through how to become well-off by TEFLing. Too often people think that TEFL teachers barely scrape by. While this may be true for some, Jackie shows us how we can travel the world teaching English and save money in the process.

She breaks down the different types of jobs and compares salary vs hours worked and explains why accepting a lower paying job might actually be better for you in the long run. Choosing where to go comes next. While many people might want to go to Europe, the money simply isn't there.

Becoming rich can seem like a daunting task, but she teaches you how to do things slowly, starting with an emergency fund, then building up to $10,000. She also teaches you about the basics, like never spending more than you make and to pay off debt.

She has put together a variety of sample portfolio options for Americans and non-Americans that can help you get started. She also encourages you to do your own research and has a number of websites she recommends you take a look at. She tells you how to choose stocks and what you should invest in. Investing can be scary, but Jackie easily breaks it down so that you can understand.

Jackie discusses passive income streams as well. There are so many options available and recommends a handful of them and tells you how to get started. She also brings up insurance, travel, and taxes and gives tips about each of these.

I'd highly recommend this book for any TEFL teacher. It's full of useful info that will help you make the most of your life as a TEFL teacher, enjoy your job, and not have to worry about retiring."

Cambridge CELTA and DELTA in Korea

I've been getting a huge number of questions from people about doing the CELTA and DELTA in Korea, so here are the details:

celta delta
Celta and Delta in South Korea


Does the CELTA open doors at Korean universities?

Part-time CELTA at the British Council in Seoul

CELTA Lesson Plans

Listening Lesson Plan

Reading Lesson Plan

Grammar Lesson Plan


Is the DELTA worth it?

Is the DELTA recognized by Korean universities?

Is the DELTA possible in Korea?


DELTA module 1 tips

DELTA module 3 tips

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Free: 40 ESL Games and Activities- Classroom Tried and Tested