This is a sponsored guest post.
All over social media, from Facebook to LinkedIn, people are posting about their move to a foreign country to teach abroad. The job is touted as having great benefits, free housing, and the chance to see the world.
There’s a common misconception that this job is only for single young adults and recent college graduates. Something that you can only pursue if you have no strings attached to anything. That discourages many with families to give up their dreams of traveling because they simply don’t believe that it’s possible.
Having a family doesn’t have to mean giving up your dreams. You can still teach in a foreign country with a family. Here’s how.
Choose a Good Location for Children
The first thing you have to think about is location. Everyone needs to think about this whenever they’re moving, but it is especially important if you have children. You want to choose somewhere that has good schools and resources for your child when they’re growing up.
You also want to choose a place that offers wages high enough to support you and your family. If you are a single parent, this will be a little more difficult (of course, you can always find ways to make supplemental income) because teacher’s salaries usually only cover one person.
Many countries in East and Southeast Asia (South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, etc) offer high enough wages to raise a child. Plus, the countries have low living costs. If you are still worried about moving with your children or aren’t sure about the location, do some research. If you’re interested in living in Thailand, many families say that they feel safe moving to Hua Hin.
Medical Care and Health Insurance
This is very important if you have young children. Older children should be taken care of under health insurance as well, but young children particularly need it. This depends on the country and on the specific school you teach at. If you go through certain placement programs, they might also provide health insurance.
This is going to depend on your research, but the quality of health care varies greatly from country to country. Sometimes the health care will be amazing, maybe even higher quality than your own country. But other times, the care will be subpar. This might be alright if it was just you going abroad, but with children, having access to quality health care is something you’ll want to consider more carefully.
Overcoming Language Barriers
Since most people English speakers who teach abroad teach English, it’s safe to assume that English is not going to be the dominant language in your new country. This might be a little difficult for your children to adapt to at first, and you may worry that they won’t do well in school or make new friends.
The good news is that young children have a much easier time adapting to new cultures than adults. If you take your child in a fully immersive foreign environment, they could potentially pick up the language with no problem. It all depends on the child and how dependent they are on you. If they are more independent, they will be more likely to learn the language.
Keeping Connected with Extended Family
A big crux of moving abroad is moving away from extended family. If you move abroad, you won’t be a short drive away from grandma and grandpa anymore. Of course, this doesn’t matter to everyone. But those who like to maintain good and close relationships with their extended family should set up ways for you and your children to keep in contact.
Thankfully, we live in a digital age where being able to talk with family is a phone tap away. Just make sure to set everything up before you leave.
Teaching abroad with family isn’t just possible – it’s highly encouraged. Raising a child in another country will give them a global perspective and help them be more understanding and accepting of other cultures.