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Teaching English in Singapore

Teaching English in Singapore

Singapore has long been dominated by its larger cousins in the global market for TEFL/ESL destinations. It’s natural to go to Thailand and Vietnam, ignoring this inspiring compact island. Lion City should no longer be a haven for Thai teachers seeking some civilization while on holiday break. Lucrative TEFL/ESL opportunities exist that allow teachers to save money and lead a lifestyle that teachers in Thailand and Vietnam can only dream of. Salaries are high, classes are mostly adults, and programs are often run in blocks – all scoring highly in any TEFL/ESL job.

Teaching English in Singapore
Teaching English in Singapore

Singapore has a lot that other countries do not offer. First, in the South East Asian region, TEFL/ESL salaries are much higher than in neighboring countries. Teachers can expect to start at $2500 per month, most likely crossing the $3000 mark. While the cost of accommodation on this small island may seem high, other costs such as transportation and meals are incredibly cheap compared to Europe or even the USA. This indeed provides a very comfortable lifestyle where teachers can experience a variety of world-renowned cuisine, spend money on travel and, of course, save money.

Teaching English in Singapore

Job searching in Singapore is undeniably best done when you get there. This is convenient as Singapore is a major international hub and visitors from native English speaking countries can enter free of charge for stays of 30 to 90 days. While coming on a zero budget may worry some teachers, it’s important to remember that unlike Japan, costs are low and the market is not already saturated by other English teachers in the same boat. Some job postings are posted online, mostly on TEFL.com and ESL Cafe’s international job board. However, these may not necessarily be the best deals, and job search in the field allows you to negotiate a better deal all-round.

Who will hire you when you get there? For an island of nearly 4 million inhabitants, Singapore has a high density of Education colleges and private institutes. There is a palpable feeling inside everyone trying to heal themselves. This means work and money for the TEFL/ESL teacher. A CELTA/Trinity TESOL candidate’s best chance is to contact major private language chains, as elsewhere in the world; Berlitz, The British Council, Cambridge Institute, GEOS, Linguaphone, Shines Education, Wall Street Institute and much more along Orchard Road.

Job opportunities can also be found in the Straits Times online job postings at st701.com. The benefits of showing up on the scene are obvious; You can impress with a professional look and demeanor that will look like you’ve been in this business for a long time, and more importantly, you can negotiate your salary with your future employer.

Teaching English in Singapore

Knowing that TEFL/ESL job seekers in Singapore don’t necessarily need a CELTA/Trinity TESOL certification will please many prospective candidates, but it will lower your salary. More importantly, have a recognized, three-year degree that the government requires for immigration purposes. Don’t let that worry you though. Obtaining the required Employment Pass is a very simple process that only requires completing some forms. This can be done in Singapore and you do not have to leave the country to complete the transaction at a High Commission. It may be interesting to note that if you earn over SGD 4000 per month, you do not need to undergo a medical examination.

Teaching English in Singapore
Teaching English in Singapore

Who you will teach is an often underestimated question, and it is very important to note that it is very unlikely that teachers are truly teaching native Singaporeans. Being a colony of the United Kingdom until 1963 and having English as the official language means that English there is very well established. This may not be reflected in local English standards, but often this is handled by the government during the child’s education.

Teaching English in Singapore

You’re much more likely to teach (in order of quantity in my experience) citizens of Mainland Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese, Indonesian, Malaysian, Filipino, Japanese, Thai, and even Burmese. This makes for a very enjoyable experience because you will most likely have multilingual lessons to teach. It may also be exciting to note that Singapore has far fewer child classes than the rest of Asia. Naturally, this is because English is the classroom language in public schools.

Moving solely from a business standpoint, Singapore offers a very relaxed tropical lifestyle as a destination for expats. The weather is characterized by two different seasons; wet and dry and hot every day! The vast majority of schools will use air conditioning to make the teaching experience much more comfortable. Singapore is famous for its multi-ethnic cuisine. The real pleasure of living there, Chinese, Malaysian, Korean, Thai, Vietnamese

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