If any place in your heart has a desire to teach overseas, then my advice is to just go for it. With the help of Sara at Greenheart Travel, my transition into life abroad was seamless. She is a viable wealth of information, kindness, and support. Although there are several agencies who offer similar services, I HIGHLY recommend going through Greenheart Travel because every member is an alumni of teaching abroad, so who better to know the unforeseen challenges and obstacles one will face.
Speaking of my experience thus far, I did get culture shock and I did miss home, it will happen. However, in doing the TEFL certification course I met some of the most tremendous individuals who helped me through these times of uncertainty. Not to mention the spectacular orientation week which afforded me the chance to meditate at Umong Temple with a monk, climb Doi Suthep, Thai kickbox and plant rice with local Thais.
After the TEFL course, I got placed just outside Bangkok teaching grade 7-9 mathematics which has proven to be quite challenging and stressful on certain days. Some of the students won’t be obidient and will disobey, just be prepared and be consistent. However, when I can get past the language and knowledge barrier of my students, I feel such a sense of success. I mean I did come to Thailand to shake myself out of a stagnant lifestyle.
Some words of advice: bring more than enough money to survive on for two months because most Thai schools pay teachers at the end of each month (sidebar - my agency luckily paid me for training so I was able to help pay for the deposit on my lease which is typically three months rent, 22,500 baht, around Bangkok). Also, pack light! Thailand has a plethora of malls and markets with anything one might need. Learn and use the Thai language even just saying Hello and Thank You get me so far. Finally, don’t expect ANYTHING. I could’ve scoured the web for days on end trying to prepare myself, but nothing would’ve compared to me actually being in this beautiful country. As I mentioned previously, if you have any desire in your (green)heart to teach overseas, then jump in and go for it!