Teach Explore Asia (XploreAsia)
Teach Explore Asia (XploreAsia) Programs
Rescue Paws is a non-profit organisation that started in 2013. Rescue Paws aims to first stabilize and then reduce the stray animal population in Thailand over time through...
Teach Explore Asia (XploreAsia) Reviews
TESOL in Thailand and teaching in Vietnam
Submitted by Jessica Sandell - Haiphong Vietnam | September 03, 2017
When considering teaching abroad I was really nervous! I always thought its best to go for it and try than to never try and never know! I always knew if I didn't like it I could always go home. My love for kids, working with them, my love for adventure and travel is what inspired me to take the plunge!
I think I got really lucky with my TESOL program and my job in Vietnam!
I got the best of both worlds! I did my course in Thailand, which was great because I got to make friends that now live and teach in Thailand, I got practical experience at a Thai school and I got to travel on my weekends off around Thailand while completing the course.
The Thailand TESOL course was really informative and because I hadn't done teaching before (only au pairing) I learnt a lot more than if I had just taken an online course. Doing the TESOL course with 20-30 other people provided a safety net and a group of people that become close friends in such a short space of time. No one will ever understand your experience as much as those other course members will.
Everyone on the course quickly became friends and having a support system like that is wonderful. Going through the same culture shocks and experiences were easy to get through knowing you weren't the only one finding it daunting and weird.
I knew I always wanted to go to Vietnam and had no interest in Thailand. Although Thailand did surprise me. The people are friendly, kind and warm. People in Asia are so humbling as they all seem to live such simple lives and they seem so happy with it!
All of the experiences I had in Thailand, I wouldn't have had the chance to experience if I did the TESOL in Vietnam.
However, I also see the benefit of doing the TESOL in Vietnam and then teaching in Vietnam because you get first hand experience with a group, you get to learn the Vietnamese language and find out what all the food is about before you settle down and live here.
I didn't get that, so the first week for me was a bit of a blur.
Trying to figure out what I was actually eating - let alone ordering.
I must say, I made the right choice in choosing Vietnam for myself. Vietnam suits me and I really love it here. I got great advice and help from Megan and Lisa (XploreAsia) on the Vietnamese food and advice on finding a job here. They set up two interviews for me, the first one didn't work out as the job offer was only for a month after my TESOL course ended and the second one was for right after my TESOL course. Everything happens for a reason and I see why the second one worked out better for me.
I am placed and live in Haiphong (northern Vietnam). I live very close to the coast. The nearest tourist hot spot an hour away is Halong Bay! Cat Ba is a 45minute ferry away, which is closer and it's really beautiful too! Great for weekend getaways!
Vietnam is kind of one of those places that you either love it or you hate it but I'm sure mostly LOVE!
My city is the 3rd largest in Vietnam, so the roads are meant to be less crowded/busy that Hanoi or Ho Chi Minh but they're still crazy! Crossing the street is sometimes a daunting task but once you get used to it it becomes normal. What won't become normal is the amount of times that I've caught someone trying to take a photo of me (without my knowledge nor consent) and the fact that everyone here stares at me because I look "different" and I'm Western. Must be because this city doesn't see a lot of tourists as most people go to Cat Ba or Halong Bay from here and don't actually stay here.
My school is an absolute dream. They provide all the course work for me as the students follow set books, all I have to do is put the pages for that class into a lesson plan. The Vietnamese staff at my school are always so helpful and make sure I have everything I need to be comfortable here. I have at least 1 TA (teacher's assistant) in each class. The TA's help control the students (although their behaviour is pretty good) and they translate from English to Vietnamese if children don't understand a concept.
It's really easy and cheap to live in Vietnam on a teacher's salary. Everything here is super cheap and its easy to travel around on "weekends" to other parts of Vietnam. The bus system is pretty reliable and regular here and so are the ferry trips.
I was nervous about giving up my lifestyle in Cape Town, South Africa for a whole new continent but I'm so glad I did it. I've already grown so much through the TESOL course and teaching in Vietnam.
Kids are amazing to work with and the rewards of what you teach them/do for them are greater than you'll ever know. They are so grateful to learn and really make you feel like a happier person.
For those considering XploreAsia and teaching in Vietnam, you should definitely go for it!
Always remember that your comfort zone is a beautiful place but nothing ever grows there!
In the next 20 years, you'll be more disappointed by the things you didn't do rather than the things you did do. Asia has so much to offer and makes your outlook on life more humble and makes you grateful for the things, friends and family that you have back home!
Program: XploreAsia Teach Vietnam Program
Submitted by Paul - Ranong Thailand | August 25, 2017
It has been a rewarding and enriching experience in terms personal growth and development here in Thailand. I never thought for once i could ever teach in my life and thanks to Explore Asia for the opportunity they have awarded me. From day one when I applied with them till this day Explore Asia have been there for me every step of the way. If you looking to move to Thailand to teach English look no further than Explore Asia.
Submitted by Jody Carter - Phibun Mansahan Thailand | August 17, 2017
For me this experience was all about new beginnings.. I was 43 years old when I left Canada with only a suit case, and the thoughts of Teaching English In Thailand. You see teaching has been a dream of mine since I graduated High School, and due to life I didn't make it reality till now.
When I arrived in Bangkok Thailand I wasn't sure what to except, and if I could due this at my age. But when I arrived at the Xploreaisa residence in Hau Hin I knew that everything was going to great. And once I started exploring the city of Hau Hin I fell in love with not just city , but the people and the Thai culture.
On my first day of the Tesol Program being nervous and the oldest person in the class , I settled in knowing that all my dreams were coming true. And all I had to do is keep going till I it was reality,
As time went on I got very comfortable in being in Thailand and fitted right in with the Thai culture making new friends and really seeing how the Thai People lived. The course was very informative and the day went on my excitement grew to be in a classroom of my own.
After the course I stayed in Hua Hin and took in the Thai culture and saw the sights in ways I don't think most people have. I walked everywhere I stopped and talked to the people even though I didn't speak Thai, to see a someone who was even interested a little bit to say Hi and ask me where I was from made me smile every time. I spent hours walking up and down the streets really getting close look at on how the Thai People really live. And taking the time to listen to some of their stories, on why they were living in Hau Hin or just to listen to their story and realizing that we all have story to tell.
Once I left Hau Hin to move the town where I would be Teaching my adventure continued in the very same fashion , of meeting new people and listening their story, and yes telling them mine.
My Teaching in Thailand has also brought many new experiences, and yes many new lessons have been learnt by and some growth. I found teaching in Thailand very interesting, demanding ,a nd yes very rewarding, I don't think there's a day that goes by I have where I may have felt home sick, tired, and have one of my students or on the many students of the school I teach at that make feel like smiling and pushing further.
I have found that the Thai students/ Teachers are always trying to make you feel welcome and usually its with food.
My time in Thailand has overall a great experience I love the culture the People and yes the food.
I hope to stay here for a long time because its my opinion that once you been here for a year. you will never want to go home.
In the shadows.
Submitted by Teresa - Surat Thani Thailand | August 12, 2017
Teaching in Thailand through Xploreasia is an experience of a lifetime. From briefing on the first day in Bangkok to our orientation week in Hua Hin, it was all just breath taking. The people that represent Xploreasia (including their adorable rescue dog, Pudding) clearly know how hard it can be to move away from home. They include you in their own family and embrace you through culture shock. When I had finished my TESOL in Hua Hin and I was sent to my placement, I experience a major wave of culture shock. (How could you not when you have to leave such incredibly welcoming people.)
However, numerous phone calls from Jon and messages from Natalie at placements, I was feeling better.
Then, I remembered the story Jon had told us about his first placement. And he said "we will only give you what we know you can handle," and he was right. I've fallen in love with my city, and I've found my home in Thailand.
So I'd like to say, thank you xploreasia.
Submitted by Jim Coryelle - Chiang MAi Thailand | August 07, 2017
Great experience. The Staff go out of their way to help in any way they can, even if it means thinking outside of the box. The teaching staff are amazing. They will do whatever it takes to make sure you grasp the material fully. Our teacher Jaco was a real gem. He was well informed, supportive, and responsive both in and out of the classroom. Our class was encouraged to work together. In the end we all came away with a group of new friends that continue to support each other