In general, most schools and language centers will expect their job applicants to commit to contracts of between 10 and 12 months. However, if you are looking for a short term adventure during the summer break, there are a few options to explore. Although you might find some employers who will take on teachers without a long term contract, most short term opportunities are found in English summer camps or via a volunteer organization.
Can I teach English in a summer language camp?
English language camps are a popular fixture during the summer months in many countries across Asia, Europe and Latin America. These usually involve around one to two months work teaching English to young learners from primary age right through to university level, depending on the location. Although this type of work is only short term, it still provides plenty of experience that will give you a good platform for developing your teaching skills and it will look good on your CV/resume for future jobs.
Are there different types of summer camps that hire English teachers?
There are several categories of summer camp that you might come across on TEFL job sites. The most common type is the overnight or away camp. In this scenario, the students spend a certain amount of time away from home living in tents or cabins. The days are spent taking part in a range of activities, all of which take place with English as the only language used. In some camps, particularly in Europe, English language classes are also taught for several hours each day. However, the main focus is generally on complete immersion in the English language regardless of the activity, whether it is sports, arts and crafts, horse riding, or mealtimes. The age range of the students is typically from 8 to 18, while the average length of stay is around two weeks.
Another type of camp that is common in more urban areas is the day camp. These generally run similar programs to away camps, but the participants return home at the end of each day. Working hours are around 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and accommodation for teachers is likely to be in a nearby apartment that may or may not be shared with other teachers on the camp. One other option that you might come across is a university camp that takes place on campus. Teachers usually stay on site and teach during the day and take part in various activities. This type of camp is mostly found in Asia, most typically in China.
Where are summer camps held, and what are the requirements for teachers?
Europe offers the most options for short term summer camps, with the majority being found in France, Germany, Italy, and Spain. In general, employers look for people with a TEFL qualification between the ages of 20 and 30, although camps in Asia will often look for older teachers. Many positions are taken by teachers who are already working in the country as they have local knowledge and experience, and they are usually free during the summer months when the schools are closed. However, camps often advertise positions online, so it is possible to organise a job from within your home country. Most jobs will include room and board, plus a stipend of around $200 to $300 per week.
Can I volunteer as an English language teacher during the summer?
Another great option for a summer teaching job is to offer your services in a volunteer position. There are a number of charitable organizations operating all over the world that are looking for TEFL qualified teachers to provide English language instruction in areas of need. Most of these opportunities are located in locations where paid teaching jobs are rare, such as India, Sub-Saharan Africa, and the less developed parts of Latin America. Typically, volunteer positions last anywhere from a week to three months which is perfect for those looking for a short term teaching adventure.