Lying off the southeast coast of China, the largest land mass between Japan and the Philippines, Taiwan is all about exotic, remote islands, mixed with ancient oriental culture, and true taste of modern Asia. Taiwan has become both a major destination for tropical holiday makers and a key hotspot of East Asian industry and technology. The landscape of Taiwan is a mix of lush, green tropics, and large, booming metropolises. The dense forests are divided by long winding streams and rivers, navigating along the foothills, whilst the coastline is typically pristine, with clear waters, decorated by areas of beautiful coral reef, perfect for diving.
The people of Taiwan tend to be a very happy sort, extremely warm and welcoming to western visitors. Around 350,000 people are thought to be indigenous to Taiwan, whilst the vast majority of the population are descendants of Chinese immigrants, most commonly from the provinces of Guangdong and Fujian. Taiwan’s interesting culture is owed to its history, being under significant rule of the Chinese, Dutch and Japanese, with plenty of ancient and sacred cultures being maintained amongst the many undisturbed islands and small communities. The huge cities of current-day Taiwan are well-developed metropolises, booming with economic growth, large expat communities, lively thriving arts and entertainment scenes, and vibrant, exciting nightlife.
Teaching English in Taiwan
Taiwan has long been TEFL teaching hotspot, with English being a very common foreign language, compulsory in students’ curriculum once they enter elementary school. English is also a subject featured on Taiwan’s state education exams. With the economy undergoing a period of boom, and the vast success of the tech industry in Taiwan, the demand for English teachers is increasing on a daily basis. You will require at least a TEFL certificate to secure teaching work in Taiwan, and if you are a native English speaker and possess a university degree, you should have no problems finding good paying teaching jobs, and many of the TEFL teachers based here take the opportunity to also learn Mandarin.
Stunning scenery, warm climate and hospital people to one side, one of the main attractions of teaching English in Taiwan are the high wages. English teachers in Taiwan can expect to earn around £13 to £17 per house, and whilst nearby countries such as South Korea and Japan can compete in terms of potential wages, they struggle to measure up in terms of low cost of living. Life in Taiwan is a pretty laid back affair, the people are extremely friendly and the pace of life is far from rushed, so with the high wages and cheap living, it’s safe to say you can live a very comfortable life in Taiwan, teaching English, with great potential to build up some saving.
The demand for TEFL teachers in Taiwan really does surpass the number of qualified teachers available in the country; even newly qualified teachers will find themselves spoiled for choice, with jobs easy to find and secure. Some newcomers to the region will take the option of securing a job from their home country, arriving in Taiwan with a school and class awaiting, whilst others will be confident in arriving in Taiwan looking to secure a job in country, and if done with a little research and the right frame of mind, there is no reason a qualified teacher shouldn’t find a well paying job within a few weeks, if not days.
Teachers will find that the vast majority of their classes will be conversational English, and whilst there are hundreds of state school English jobs available, adults in Taiwan also have a strong desire to learn English for professional reasons, leaving lots of well paying jobs teaching business English and tutoring highly motivate company executives.
Some interesting facts about Taiwan..
Taiwan is also known as La Formosa, which is Portuguese, meaning “the beautiful island.”
The national sport of Taiwan is baseball; the locals are crazy about it!
The rapid economic and industrial growth which took place in Taiwan during the late 20th century is known as the “Taiwan Miracle.”
Amongst Taiwan’s many large technological giants are Garmin, Acer and HTC.
Due to the ‘sweet potato’ like shape of Taiwan, many locals refer to themselves as “children of the sweet potato.”
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