Teaching abroad gives you the chance not only to gain leadership experience and build new skills, but also to share your knowledge and provide valuable education in a variety of subjects.

What you can do on a teach abroad program

There are tons of different subjects that you can teach all over the world - English is probably the most popular placement you’ll find as a volunteer teacher, but you also can find opportunities in other areas like math, science, other languages, computer skills, life skills, and even sports.

If you want to get paid to travel, teaching abroad is a great way to do it: many of the English teaching programs you’ll find on Abroadly offer TEFL certification, which qualifies you for paid work as an English teacher anywhere in the world.

A few ways that you can teach abroad include:

  • Helping in a classroom as a teacher’s assistant, keeping students engaged, providing basic tutoring, and marking homework and tests
  • Developing lesson plans and leading a classroom on your own for a semester or a full term
  • Planning and presenting community workshops in health and hygiene, alternative income generation, recycling and sustainability, and other subjects
  • Providing training in computer skills, business development, basic accounting, and other subjects for adult learners
  • Coaching sports in an after-school program

Qualifications for teachers abroad

Teaching abroad is one of the most popular volunteer program types, and for good reason: there will always be demand for education worldwide, and there are so many different subjects to be taught. But to ensure you make the best impact you can, and have a positive experience abroad, it’s important to know what you can realistically contribute.

If you don’t have any experience or training, you can still find a teach abroad program! If you’re willing and able to put time and effort toward training, there are many programs you can find on Abroadly that offer TEFL certification, where you can become qualified to teach English as a foreign language. If you don’t have much time to travel just yet, you can a find combination of online and in-country certification programs that will provide you with a mix of theory and practice so that you can confidently lead a classroom on your own.

For travelers who are looking for a short-term teach abroad experience (under 12 weeks), and who don’t have a background in teaching, there still are many ways to get involved. These placements will have you working alongside local teachers as their assistant: you’ll follow their lead in carrying out lessons, keeping their classrooms organized, and keeping students engaged.

If you’re studying to become a teacher, or if you have some background, you’ll often have the opportunity to do more, depending on how long you can stay in-country and what type of experience you’re looking for. For example, you can work alongside a local teacher and lead some lessons on your own. Or you can plan workshops, develop lesson plans, and take on greater levels of responsibility. Coaching sports, leading PE classes, and getting involved in after-school programs also are great volunteer opportunities for prospective teachers or those with experience working with children and teens.

And if you have formal teaching experience, you can lead classrooms, develop full lesson plans, work in specialized subjects, or even assist with school administration.

Just remember: regardless of your background and education, teaching in another country will be a learning experience for you too!

Why you should teach abroad

As a volunteer teacher, there are so many ways you can make a difference! Some ways teachers help our partners include:

  • Providing extra assistance in over-crowded classrooms so that local teachers can be sure their students are engaged and learning
  • Giving specialized or one-on-one attention to students in need or who are falling behind in their schoolwork
  • Mentoring troubled or at-risk students in an after-school program where they can have a safe place to play, do their homework, and hang out with their friends
  • Helping young adults develop new skills, such as business management or IT, to build their careers

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