Office to Nomad – Your Guide to Going Remote
Remote working has been rising in popularity over the past decade and since the Covid-19 pandemic, the numbers of digital workers has increased significantly. Thanks to high-speed internet and cutting edge technological resources, people who are eager to enjoy greater freedom while also making a living can now forge flourishing careers without ever setting foot in a conventional workplace, and one of the most exciting career paths that remote workers can now follow is TEFL.
Teaching English to overseas students is incredibly rewarding, and with so many online teaching opportunities these days it isn’t surprising that those who have the right skills to choose teach English in China or in many other countries around the world while pursuing a nomadic lifestyle.
Between 2019 and 2020, the American digital-nomad population grew by 50% and many of those workers are education professionals. With a TEFL qualification, you can travel anywhere in the world, discovering new places and having exciting new experiences while also earning a living in a valuable and engaging job. It’s no wonder that the possibility of this enjoyable lifestyle is attracting attention from more and more people.
If you’re ready to go remote as an overseas English teacher, you may be wondering how to get started. So here’s a brief guide to help you take the first steps.
Get Your TEFL Qualification
Although technically you don’t have to be TEFL qualified to be an online English teacher, you’re unlikely to be properly equipped to carry out the job without this crucial qualification. A TEFL course will help you develop the skills you need to prepare and deliver engaging and effective lessons to overseas students. Furthermore, having a TEFL certificate opens up far more opportunities to you and makes you an attractive prospect to reputable online companies seeking skilled English instructors to work with their students worldwide.
Find An Overseas English Teaching Job
There are many companies that specialise in introducing skilled English teachers to students worldwide who are keen to develop and improve their English language skills with formal online lessons. Once you’re qualified, you’ll be well-placed to find the right reputable organisation to work with. Do your research well and make sure that you’re happy with your choice before you set off on your travels.
Decide Where You’ll Travel
Now it’s time for the exciting part – you can start thinking about which countries you’d like to explore while working as a nomadic digital teacher. You’ll probably need to apply for some visas to enable you to live overseas, so you’ll need to get together the relevant paperwork in advance.
Some of the documents you may need to produce include your valid passport, birth certificate, professional qualification certificates, medical records, a criminal background check, and proof of your income. Make sure you have these to hand so that you’re well-prepared to make visa applications.
You should also think ahead about automating your finances, setting up automatic payments for your regular bills, setting up a digital banking profile and applying for a roaming-friendly credit card so that you won’t need to worry about accessing your money while you’re away.
Get Your Technology In Order
To teach online, you’re going to need to invest in the right technology. You’ll require an efficient and reliable tech infrastructure if you’re going to deliver effective online lessons, so you’ll have to buy a high-quality laptop with a webcam, choose a fast internet connection and select the right software to do your job to the best of your ability.
Make sure, too, that you’ve familiarised yourself with your chosen teaching tools before you set off. That way, you can ensure your students enjoy the smoothest possible learning experience.
Expect The Unexpected
If there’s one thing you can be certain of when you’re teaching English online, it’s that things won’t always go according to plan.
Being prepared is key to successful nomadic teaching, even if your internet goes down or you experience a technical glitch. By investing in a mobile hotspot, a backup tablet or laptop, and a reliable smartphone, you’ll be able to remain in contact with your students even if you’re having connectivity problems.
Build Your Support Network
While the nomadic teaching lifestyle can be a lot of fun, it can get lonely from time to time. Building a strong support network is, therefore, essential. You can connect with a community of digital nomads and online teachers through social media groups and forums where you can exchange tips, seek help, and share knowledge with other like-minded people who understand how rewarding yet challenging teaching while travelling can be.
Plan Your Working Environment
While some of the places you travel to may be perfectly set up for online teaching, others may present more challenges. Planning ahead is key to designing a suitable space for delivering lessons. While some days you may have the advantage of setting up in a comfortable room with a desk, chair, and convenient lighting, other days, you may have to make do with sitting on the floor.
Prepare yourself for all eventualities with a portable light ring, a plain white cloth to pin up as a backdrop, and a folding laptop stand so that you can teach hands-free even in the least equipped spaces.
Reap The Benefits Of Digital Nomadic Teaching
The life of a digital nomadic English teacher has a lot to offer, enabling you to combine your passion for travel with your love of imparting knowledge to others. If you pay close attention to this guide, you’ll be able to reap the benefits of this exciting and rewarding lifestyle while overcoming the challenges that it can present.
No matter where in the world you travel, you’ll be ready to share your skills, engage with your students, and experience pride in your achievements while also discovering the world’s most amazing sights and locations.