Best Place to Teach With No Expereince

by David

Hello there,

I've been thinking of leaving my job and doing a TEFL course and going to Asia to teach. I have worked in social care with adults with learning difficulties for 5 years. I want to be guaranteed work and from what I've read here I'm still not sure if it is guaranteed in Ho Chi Minh City with just a TEFL? Is the TEFL itself useless there? Or could I get a job and survive for a while?

I'm thinking if it's easier to get a job in Cambodia and get some experience then it would give me more of a guaranteed start. I seen you say you need the minimum 120 hour TEFL course, would you say it's absolutely necessary? As it is a bit more expensive than the weekend course and well I'm poor lol I would get it if it's really needed however.

I'm not thinking of doing this until next year and I read you say after March is the best time, is this the case? Also what are the school terms over there and the best times to get a job? Is the rainy season really bad? I ideally want to go to Ho Chi Minh City but would go to Cambodia to get some teaching experience.

I am an electronic music producer and play guitar badly lol I plan on taking my laptop, midi keyboard and midi controller pads and also DJ software would my hobbies help with work? I know this isn't really teaching but do people get jobs DJing?
Thanks for a great site and any help that comes my way.




Reply from

Sorry, David. Your post got lost in our database and I only just found it in our log files. I try to answer as many questions as I can but this page often contains the answers most people seek.

I don't see where you have a problem that needs solving. A TEFL is better than nothing, but only if the TEFL course includes some in-class practicum. Only the 120 hour or more TEFL classes do in-class practicum. The schools value only the experience you have gained in a real class. Any TEFL is better than no TEFL but the best is the 120hr class.

If you want a guaranteed job then you need better qualifications. Sorry just a fact of life.

I have a friend who was a DJ in Saigon. He worked at the Heart of Darkness and taught English in the day. He worked until 4am then worked a few shifts in the afternoon at the school. He had not one single qualification but he was interesting, funny and made the class happy.

That's the teacher they really want.

The best time to go is just after Chinese new year and the TET holiday has finished. That's when all the students come back to school and get back at it.

Cambodia is a great place but harder to find teaching work as a newcomer. Much more strict with wanting degrees and a CELTA.

David, it is easier than it seems to many people to get work in Saigon. Buy a cell phone and a SIM card when you arrive. Adjust and print out some resumes at the internet shop. Get on your best duds and take a stack of resumes with you. Hop on the back of a moto taxi and say, "Take me to the best schools around here".

The taxi drivers get English teachers searching for jobs on the back seat of their motorbikes everyday. Drop off about 7-10 resumes and wait for the calls to come in. Go to interviews and be prepared to do a demo class. You will teach say "Present-Perfect" tense to a small class. If you do well, you get hired. Without degree, without TEFL, without prior experience.

But could you teach me the meaning of present perfect tense in 10 minutes? Make 1 person laugh yet get them to understand the topic and you are in. Then you negotiate your salary. Here is when they say "More papers, more pay". Papers being TEFL, Degree etc.

Hope I was of some help.

Here is the Facebook page on the guy who was a DJ in Saigon. Send him a message and tell him you are a friend of mine! Nik Ray


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