I’ve been writing this blog for a little over a year now, which, of course, coincides with the fact that I have been teaching English for a year too. My visa is now up for renewal, and like most English teachers at the end of their first year, I have a big decision to make.
Continue teaching or not?
Should I continue teaching? For many teachers, this is a difficult choice. It might involve finding a new school, a new visa sponsor, or even moving to a new location. If you are lucky enough to have the option of a renewed contract with your current school then the process is much simpler and you will be able to continue without much hassle.
Write it down
The wise thing to do in this situation is to make three lists:
1. What you have achieved so far (job skills, language skills, and new experiences)
2. What you want to achieve (in terms of your career and your life)
3. What options are available to you
List 1 might be more impressive than you think. You’ve gained teaching experience, the experience of living abroad (possibly with the added bonus of picking up a new language), and countless transferable skills (organization, presentation, communication etc.).
List 2 will depend on you as a person. You should list both long-term and short-term goals, and evaluate your current situation in line with that.
List 3 is perhaps the key here. If you decide to quite teaching, what options do you have? Is there a position waiting back home at the family firm? Do you want to study more at university? Or, is a tasty bonus being offered you if you remain in your current position? Perhaps there is even a teaching position in another country/city that’s beckoning you?
My decision is made
For me, the decision is fairly clear-cut because I like living here and I like my job. Plus I’m addicted to Japanese food. I hope the above advice helps any others out there facing the same decision!