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Looking for a Career Change? Why You Might Want to be an ESL Teacher

There are a number of reasons why you might choose to become an ESL teacher. It is also something many people come to much later in life. There’s no doubt it can be a very rewarding career change to make, especially if you’re feeling a little jaded with your current direction. One good reason to choose to walk the ESL teacher path is that it provides you with the opportunity to travel and pay for your journey at the same time. First, let’s talk about the qualifications you need to start this kind of job and then look at some of the other reasons why teaching English as a second language might suit you.

What Qualifications are Needed to become an ESL Teacher?

Requirements vary but generally, you need at least a bachelor’s degree. If you obtain an ESL Masters degree, your options will be much wider. It will also be very useful if you can speak a second language, as again, this will open far more doors. If you’ve already got these qualifications, you’re well on the way to changing your life forever. With such a change in your career path, you’ll also enjoy some other benefits:

You Get to Spend Time Away from Your Desk

This might not sound like much of a perk, but if your current job means you’re sitting at a desk for hours at a time, you’ll appreciate a job that requires a little more movement. Our lives are becoming increasingly sedentary, which is not a good thing at all.

Interaction with Students

Your job as an ESL teacher depends on interaction with your students. You’ll certainly be kept on your toes, and you might be surprised how much interaction is required. There are many ways you can interact. For example, with younger children, this can be part of a game. As a result of your interactions with them, you’ll be able to achieve your goal of teaching them to read, speak, and understand English. The role may be a challenging one, but the rewards far outweigh any cost.

Influencing Several Generations

As well as teaching your students, you’ll also be helping other members of their family and friends. You probably hadn’t thought about the fact that they will take home what they have learned in your lessons and share with others family members.

You’re Making a Difference

The aim of many of your students will be to eventually pass an English proficiency exam. Imagine how you will swell with pride when the scores come in. Who knows where it will take them afterwards? Maybe onto bigger and better qualifications and eventually onto a top job.

If you choose to become an ESL teacher, you will see the results of your hard work immediately. This is all the more apparent if you choose to teach young children because they tend to pick up foreign languages much quicker than older children or adults. There may be a number of reasons why you choose this change in career, but you can be certain it will be rewarding.

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  1. Chris D

    May 8, 2019 at 2:48 am


    Thanks for the post. I’ve got my Bachelor of Arts students graduating soon and a few of them are thinking of going in to ESL teaching after their degree. I’ll share this article with them to give them some ideas for an essay they’re writing on what their post-degree plans are 🙂


  2. Tlss Denver

    January 20, 2020 at 10:51 am

    I agree I know a lot of people succeed in providing their families’ needs and wants through teaching English online. ESL is one of the best career choices for those who just graduated. You don’t need to have a degree in education to be an ESL teacher. You just need patient and hard work.

  3. Jackie

    January 21, 2020 at 11:58 pm

    I taught English for 10 years in South Korea, and overall, had a really great experience with it! It was quite the adventure and I was also able to save a good chunk of cash for life back home when I did eventually go back to Canada.

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