Why You Shouldn't Get Your TEFL & Teach in Japan

Benefits: 8
Support: 10
Fun: 10
Facilities: 10
Safety: 10

The title of this review is a little bit misleading. Well, to be honest, a lot a bit misleading. The only reason one shouldn't come to Japan to teach english is if he or she is not open to new experiences and new cultures (which if that's the case he or she probably shouldn't be traveling at all). Japan is a beautiful and rich culture in so many ways, and whether you live and teach in the countryside or the city the experiences you WILL have are abundant.

My TEFL certification, which I received through the International TEFL Academy, has allowed me to be competitive in the job market as well as confident in the classroom while here in Japan. And honestly, the classroom is just one more interesting and often exciting way to learn about Japanese people, culture, and history while making connections you will never forget. (The students, staff, and fellow teachers are also really wonderful about keeping you up to date on local events and festivals which you can't miss out on)!

I worked for two years as an eikaiwa teacher, teaching students anywhere from the age of just 1 year into 90-something years. The conversations I had and the relationships I formed were unlike most of the relationships I made in any job previously. Also, because of the TEFL certification and the experience I gained through my courses and practicum, I walked into my first lesson (and many following lessons) far more confident and prepared than the teachers who came without a certification.

Following my experience working eikaiwa, I have recently started working as a Junior High School ALT. While the classroom experience, class sizes, and working hours are different from the eikaiwa lifestyle, I have already fallen in love with this position. Once again, I'm surrounded by incredibly open and welcoming co-workers and students-- only this time your students make you feel like a rock star (literally). Due to my previous experience in eikaiwa, as well as the aforementioned TEFL experience, the day to day classroom lifestyle has been incredibly smooth and easy for me. My teachers have mentioned how my teaching style is different from other ALTs, but they also think it's really fun and engaging. The methods I use are ones I wouldn't have learned without my TEFL and practicum experience.

Outside of work, life is always an adventure for me. There is always some sort of event or festival happening. There are so many gorgeous sites to see and rich cultural/historical experiences to engage in. Since moving here, I have also been able to travel to several other countries. I have traveled from Japan to Korea, Hokkaido (which, yes, is part of Japan but it's still very different), Australia, and Taiwan. I have plans to go to Korea again, Hawaii, and Thailand this year alone. I'm also able to do all of these things despite still having to pay off loans and student debt from America.

When I originally decided to get my certification, I didn't know where I wanted to go or how long I would want to do any of this. However, I can honestly say that getting that certification and making the decision to come to Japan has been not only life-changing, but it has been one of the best decisions I have ever made. If you're considering traveling and you want an enjoyable way to work while you do it then you can't go wrong, and Japan is (in my opinion) one of the best places you can go to start your own adventure. I am so grateful to ITA, my practicum teachers, and the classmates I had during my TEFL course for helping encourage and prepare me for the experiences of a life time. I am looking forward to even more!

Would you recommend this program?
Yes, I would
Year Completed
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I have so many photos and videos, so if there are any problems please let me know. I uploaded three photos and one video.