Messages by Anthony

13 topics, 110 messages Feed-icon
General » China Pay
Of course.... But it is handled like a year end bonus typically.... About 1000rmb per month. So if you wait till the end of the year it is pretty sweet.....
General » China Pay
Last I heard the basic salary is 4000rmb to 5000rmb. Mine was 4000 but they offered to give me my airfare reimbursement during the course of the contract, so that put it up to 5000 per month. Also they pay your rent, utilities, high speed internet fees and other expenses, which can add up a lot. the pay you get from Buckland goes into your pocket, not overhead.

May not seem a lot when you do the conversion to Canadian dollars, but something to keep in mind is in China, and in the areas you will be working at first, 4-5K is more than the average local doctor or lawyer is making, so you will be able to travel, go out sightseeing and have tons of fun, and even save a little.
General » China Pay
It truly is amazing. A literal Backpackers heaven.

During the daytime it is peaceful and serene with a landscape and culture that will bring you back thousands of years. Then at night time the western streets are alive with thousands of laid back party people hopping from bar to lounge to disco and back! A little something for everyone.
General » China Pay
Don't worry about the wait. Buckland deals with literally hundreds of new teachers every year at this time. Plus they have to deal with all the red tape required to get a teacher into the country. It is nothing to worry about though, simply takes a little time. Continue planning as normal.

As for cheaper flight, my first flight I went with China Airlines. While the food and service were great (Far Better than Air Canada) it was a milk run. Edmonton - Vancouver - Taipei - Hong Kong - Guilin - then 1 hour road trip to Yangshuo. Do a little search online or talk to a travel agent and you should be able to get the best deal, though the direct flights to Hong Kong from AC are nice.... Buckland will pick you up at the Guilin airport and then take care of your transportation to your new school. All you have to do is get to Guilin and someone will be waiting.

Somethings you may need in China are clothes and shoes, depending how big your requirements are for either. Bras tend to be something of a difficulty for "Canadian Sized" women, as Chinese women are traditionally "different" (trying to be PC here) But other than that, western medicines are common in pharmacies and easy to find, though I find Chinese traditional medicines far more effective anyway. One hard to find item (oddly enough) is deodorant, good to stock up in advance. But most everything else you might want or need is available now in China and even if not, once you make a few Chinese friends they can introduce you to the wonder of TaoBao.com which is the Chinese Ebay and the skies the limit! I can even get (believe it or not!!!!) Timmies Coffee in CHINA!!!! NICE!!!! Once you meet some other foreigners in town they will be able to fill you in on the place to get western friendly goodies too.

As for the language, no worries. Locals travel from all over China to study and live in Yangshuo, often giving up their jobs and homes in order to stay in hostels in the hopes of improving their English. Yangshuo will be no problem. And you will quickly discover that in China, ALL students MUST study English, it is not optional. And whereas many will be too shy to bother trying to speak, you will find tons of folks desperate to find new friends to practice with. The students in your school will also become ready translators! So no fear! Once the city folk know another foreigner is in town you will be surrounded by new friends absolutely desperate to practice their English and act as tour guides and translators for you. Trust me, its a blast and you will likely go out for dinner more nights a week than not!

I am sure you are going to love Yangshuo! Think of me when you are staring drop-jawed at the most amazing place (IMO) on Earth!
General » China Pay
Funny you should say......

I started EXACTLY like you are! I started with Buckland in Yangshuo, picked a school and away i went!

I can guarantee Buckland is on the up and up and will hire you, no need to worry about that.

The next steps are getting your shots and air tickets for getting to Yangshuo. They prefer teachers to come during Spring Festival here so you can start fresh in the new term. Buckland will give you details, but best to get started NOW as the shots and such do have to be spaced out. Once your shots are done and the z visa is in hand, you are on your way to adventure!

And as for Yangshuo, it is absolutely, 100% the ABSOLUTE reason I chose China in the first place all those years ago. It is known as the back packers heaven and it truly is a little piece of heaven on earth! I have been back several times since and would go back again right this second if I didn't have work to worry about.

Here are some photos of my first trip, way back in 2004, when I was just like you, a new teacher with a head full of wonder and a little nervous about life in China.

http://picasaweb.google.com/sirant/YangshuoTheChineseAdventureBegins#

if you are interested, here are some pictures of my first teaching gig I got through Buckland. They were fantastic and supported me every step of the way!

http://picasaweb.google.com/sirant/YulinNanningAnd9MiddleSchool#

Have a great time! Buckland will treat you well and I can almost guarantee you will love Yangshuo! Definitely try the street side Guilin Noodles for breakfast (about 25 cents) and do a bicycle tour with a guide. You will see things you never dreamed. Buckland will put you up in their Hostel for free for 1-2 weeks to help you get used to China, give you some teaching practice and give you time to choose your new school.

Good luck and have fun!

Should anyone want to discuss these things by email or MSN I can be found at sirant@gmail.com for both!

Take care and have a blast!
General » China Pay
The University of Liverpool. It offers accelerated online programs for those who can't make time to attend actual classes. It would normally be a 4 year program, but if you work your ass off and do your studies everyday (7 DAYS A WEEK) not only can you finish faster, but it saves you money. That said it was not cheap! You can work out a payment plan and stretch it out over 4 years, but then it is almost double. I also had past college diplomas which counted towards the degree credits also.

There are many universities now offering fast-tracked degrees online for business people who could never make time for actual classes. Currently considering getting my MBA in IT as well, but working a lot now and the company will provide the training internally.

General » China Pay
I didn't have a degree when I came, but I did a 2 year online program and received a degree in Information Technology, which has simplified everything dramatically. In the bigger centers (where the good money is to be made) more and more local governments are requiring degrees. I live in Shenzhen, and they do require a degree and personal interview with the police bureau to get a legal work visa.

Smaller cities do not have any such requirements, but for those candidates who have excellent experience and qualifications, without a degree, the right companies CAN fix the visa issues, but you would have to be something special or highly experienced.

More and more people are coming to China now, not just for English teaching, so you can bet more changes will be coming.

Sam, I sent you my contact info, look forward to talking with you!
General » China Pay
I didn't have a degree when I came, but I did a 2 year online program and received a degree in Information Technology, which has simplified everything dramatically. In the bigger centers (where the good money is to be made) more and more local governments are requiring degrees. I live in Shenzhen, and they do require a degree and personal interview with the police bureau to get a legal work visa.

Smaller cities do not have any such requirements, but for those candidates who have excellent experience and qualifications, without a degree, the right companies CAN fix the visa issues, but you would have to be something special or highly experienced.

More and more people are coming to China now, not just for English teaching, so you can bet more changes will be coming.

Sam, I sent you my contact info, look forward to talking with you!
General » China Pay
Really depends on location, experience and you.

I started out teaching kids in a small city in China 7 years ago for $500 Canadian a month, yet after getting my feet wet, moving to a big city and going into the business/adult teaching field I now EASILY make more than your average High School teacher back home. Given the much lower cost of living here, its the same as double back home. Now I am doing demo classes which pay me commission if the potential students sign up and have management training starting soon as well, so the salary could go up even higher! Could be up to the 40-50K Canadian range before long.

BUT!!!! I have years of experience and a very sought after teaching style. I get peoples attention walking by on the streets (glass classrooms) and have worked for years without complaint from either employers or students. Being a dynamic and exciting teacher does require a lot of work. Even though I only teach 30 hours a week, I do many more hours in preparation and through trial and error have learned what makes the students pop! I sing, I dance, I crack jokes and I find materials the students want to learn. I am absolutely NUTSO when walking around my center, when working or not! And THAT is what makes my style of teaching so valuable. A LARGE percentage of ESL teachers do 80% of the talking and spend a lot of time writing stuff on the board. I make it a point to make my talk time less than 30% in every class, regardless of student level. This DOES get noticed by management....

Some teachers come looking for 20 hour weeks and lots of free time to travel. They tend to stay within the 1000-1500 Canadian range per month. But if you are willing to tackle teaching as a REAL job and put your heart and soul into it, you could easily be making the same money here as you would for a professional job back home, only at half (or less) the cost of living.

I have been in China now 7 years after the TESOL course. (left Edmonton 1 month after the course!) It literally changed my life. I have savings enough to buy a house, mortgage free!, have a job with serious management potential and have decided that teaching will be my life long career after giving up a high paying IT job back home. Its not for everyone, but if you decide to put the effort in and work through the low salaries and learning curve to becoming a great teacher, the skies the limit! Teaching is a highly respected and honored job in China and for those few who decide to give it their all, it can be a career unlike any other!

General » What if I have no degree??
In my experience:

1) Schools wont check paperwork that diligently. If the degree is from an accredited school that's likely as far as the investigation will go. You can do a Google search yourself to find out if the organization providing the degree is accredited.
If it is, I would HIGHLY doubt the school will take the time and effort (not to mention expense) to contact the organization directly.

2) Being a native English speaker helps a lot and many schools will require it. I know people who are 2nd or 3rd generation Asian/South American/African Canadians/Americans who have a hard time finding jobs because they don't "look" like Native English Speakers (Caucasian) even though they are fully fluent and have lived in English countries all their life.

That said, I also know people who are not native English speakers and English is a second or 3rd language but they are good enough it doesn't matter. It may be a little harder to find a job, but by no means impossible. Keep your chin up and keep hunting!