Have to ask: why do people come to Taiwan to be teachers?

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Re: Have to ask: why do people come to Taiwan to be teachers?

Postby divea » 11 May 2012, 01:01

Ducked wrote:Because I fucked up a good thing back home.


:bravo: :bravo: :bravo: I think it goes for a lot of people, but no one will admit it. Respect, man. :notworthy:
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Re: Have to ask!

Postby Ducked » 11 May 2012, 08:25

sandman wrote:
Isha wrote:So exactly WHAT is your area of expertise? And why are you here in Taiwan making monkey wages (less than NT$200k per month is monkey wages in my book, and TRUST me, if you put Taiwan on your resume, no matter WHICH job you're in, you're getting a "buggered off to the sun when he could have been contributing to society" note) when you could be in wherever else making MUCH better coin? Me, I came for a laugh. Here I am, 25 years on, STILL having a laugh and making NICE dosh, house, summer house, Holidays in the sun, cars, bikes, the lot. SaWEEEET!
Sure, my mates ask me back home what the hell I'm doing out there in the third world. I just buy them a pint (they can't afford more than two, generally) and say: "Livin' large, my friend. Livin' LARGE!")


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Re: Have to ask: why do people come to Taiwan to be teachers?

Postby GuyInTaiwan » 11 May 2012, 09:22

It's definitely possible to phone it in if you're in the government system, and this is as true for the Taiwanese teachers as the foreign teachers. I see it all the time and I'm getting more that way myself.
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Re: Have to ask: why do people come to Taiwan to be teachers?

Postby jonnyspermz » 15 May 2012, 20:19

I can only speak for myself, and when I came to Taiwan I was youngish (26) but hardly a fresh-faced grad leaving behind the promise of stateside riches. Personally, I had tried the stifling suit and tie thing, and life in a cubicle was not for me. I was a career changer, and had interest in teaching, but I wasn't quite ready to commit to graduate school just yet. As much as I loved New York City, I wanted a change ... I wanted a little adventure. I had heard that Taiwan was a helluva gig: you could make a decent living teaching, the expat community was colorful and the locals would embrace me. I was warned that I'd fall in love with the culture, the food, the isle in general, and I knew I could get my first introduction to teaching without any more than my BS degree in Literary Rhetoric (and a killer smile, and an infectious energy). You didn't ask why I stayed (7 years), so I'll stop there, but I will say that everything that was promised (and more) awaited me in the 'Wan.
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Re: Have to ask!

Postby steelersman » 15 May 2012, 20:54

Isha wrote:
tomthorne wrote:Why do you find it (v.) odd? If you can tell me that then I can answer your question more easily.


In my experience earning professional degrees is a great deal of hard work and one do it because they have an aim or something they want to achieve or at least get a good position in related field. That's where my question comes in.


Many people get degrees because that is what they are supposed to do. They have not spent much time to think what they want to do after graduation and end up in Taiwan rather than working at Walmart, McDonalds, etc.

Plus, I would not call a Bachelor's degree a professional degree.
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Re: Have to ask!

Postby steelersman » 15 May 2012, 21:07

divea wrote:
sandman wrote:
Isha wrote:
tomthorne wrote:Why do you find it (v.) odd? If you can tell me that then I can answer your question more easily.

In my experience earning professional degrees is a great deal of hard work and one do it because they have an aim or something they want to achieve or at least get a good position in related field. That's where my question comes in.

So exactly WHAT is your area of expertise? And why are you here in Taiwan making monkey wages (less than NT$200k per month is monkey wages in my book, and TRUST me, if you put Taiwan on your resume, no matter WHICH job you're in, you're getting a "buggered off to the sun when he could have been contributing to society" note) when you could be in wherever else making MUCH better coin? Me, I came for a laugh. Here I am, 25 years on, STILL having a laugh and making NICE dosh, house, summer house, Holidays in the sun, cars, bikes, the lot. SaWEEEET!
Sure, my mates ask me back home what the hell I'm doing out there in the third world. I just buy them a pint (they can't afford more than two, generally) and say: "Livin' large, my friend. Livin' LARGE!")

Sandman you have 30 years of experience okay?? I am assuming the missus earns a bit too for like what 20 years AT Least??? Why are you snickering at the OP? It's not like you Buxibanned your way into two houses. I am assuming you never sat down in a classoom and did M-A-T Mat! Truth be told, it is a valid question, teachers don't earn much in TW and working in a cram school doesn't really give you back much (monetarily). It gives you enough to earn and laze out, but that's that. You have to have a wifey with a solid income, or atleast she has to be the kind who slogs her arse off at work AND takes care of the kids and the home for most people to make ends meet and provide stability because buxibanning is not a very reliable source of livelihood. Nothing wrong with that set up either, but the OP is right, there are some people you see, who have the bestest of degrees, are bloody talented, absolutely nice people, miserable in a big Buxiban, depressed by the weather and still stay on. What is the lure??

What is the lure for a 30 sth. teacher, to come and teach in TW, stay in crappy rented places (because most places that are rented are crappy), eat food that they hate, teach children they find spoilt and bored, What?? Why??


urodacus wrote:There are not many jobs for people with degrees in linguistics, or geography, or art history, or Middle ages French literature.

So they don't have schools in their own countries to teach at? :roll: I am sure for a geography graduate, doing another year of teacher's training is easier than migrating to TW.



In the United States a lot of teachers are losing their jobs. I don't think it is that easy to become a teacher in the U.S. Moving to Taiwan would be much easier. Plus I bet that the majority of people who start teaching in Taiwan don't plan to do it for the rest of their lives so why would they spend money to become a licensed teacher?
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Re: Have to ask: why do people come to Taiwan to be teachers?

Postby UTS » 26 Jun 2012, 11:13

Hi, my first post as a newbie to Forumosa.com, after reading every reply in this thread, I wanted to contribute my two-pence worth...and to say thanks!

I am in a similar situation as bigduke and others, working stupid hours (many night-shifts) and mostly seven days a week, where I stay in hotels almost every night of the week, and go "home" maybe one night per week...it's stress man, and I'm about 30 kg (66lbs) overweight, plus I have no personal life...like on the night that I am "home", it's not like I can make plans with my friends or maintain any meaningful relationships...so, away from the rat-race, away from 100+ hour weeks and into a life of hopefully more leisure and more fun and more exercise...plus I love working with kiddies, I used to work at Great Ormond Street Hospital, a top-notch kids' hospital in London and the best thing about it was the kids...without doubt...but the hours...and the stress...no thanks :(

Oh and yeah, I do get paid a fair whack of cash every month, but as others have said, you spend big too...and it's for the simple reason because you can, and because there's no time or point in worrying about saving a few pennies in the grand scheme of things...alas, most of it is wasted...life is for living, not working! :wink:

So, my friends from back home in Australia worked there for a couple years and tell me that I will love it, life's easy, you can work in the city, and have all that cities have, and then jump on your scooter and ride up into the mountains and chill out or go swimming or whatever...plus the pay is more than ample for a decent and fun life...they loved it, and I am sure I will too...

I also want to say thanks to everyone on here, I've enjoyed reading everyone's thoughts, and chuckled a few times...thanks to GuyInTaiwan and Bigduke and those other guys that post fairly regularly, your posts have helped confirm that my intended move over there in a few months after saving a wee bit for getting set up will be the thing I need to do for my own health and sanity...

Thanks a bunch, and to the OP for posing the question in the first place...it was my question too...thanks! :bravo:

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Re: Have to ask: why do people come to Taiwan to be teachers?

Postby Isha » 26 Jun 2012, 11:51

Welcome and thanks for sharing your thoughts. You have every good reason to move here. I am all for good (or at least OK) money-least stressed life style, don't want to die by heart attack in 30s like some people I knew back home. I would say that write your reasons down and stick on a wall, read before you leave your home every day :).
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Re: Have to ask: why do people come to Taiwan to be teachers?

Postby Omniloquacious » 26 Jun 2012, 14:50

Welcome to Forumosa and Taiwan, UTS. I applaud your resolve, and am sure it has a very good chance of turning out well for you.

For me, maintaining a balance in my life and keeping ample time free for things other than work is far more precious than any amount of money I could earn by working all hours. If I'd stayed in England and toiled away as a lawyer, I'd almost certainly be ten times wealthier than I am now. But I wouldn't have had so much of a life, and it probably would have taken such a toll on my physical and mental health that I'd hardly be able to enjoy whatever pile of wealth I'd amassed.

I'm well satisfied with the decision I made in 1985 to come to Taiwan, and with all the decisions I've made since then to turn down jobs that would have eaten up too much of my time. After 26 years of almost always working only part time, and only occasionally letting work occupy more of my time than I'm comfortable with, I've still managed to earn ample to meet all my needs, provide well for my family, and build up a decent store of savings. I really don't see how I could have asked for more than that.

Money comes and goes. A store of money can be easily lost and then regained; but our store of life can never be replenished as its all-too-small allotment of days and years ticks by. The difference between having enough money and having a lot really isn't so substantial, and certainly not substantial enough to justify sacrificing most else to earn it. I feel so lucky to have been able to spend most of my prime years working only a few hours a day, five days a week, and spending all the rest of my time tramping about in nature, wild swimming, and doing things that filled day after day with pleasure and satisfaction. I couldn't put any price on that: it's beyond monetary valuation.
If I prioritized the acquisition of wealth above other purposes in life, I might still have come to Taiwan to study Chinese, but I doubt I would have remained here.
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Re: Have to ask: why do people come to Taiwan to be teachers?

Postby kaikai34 » 26 Jun 2012, 23:54

I enjoy teaching, but have you seen what kind of kids Americans are popping out nowadays? It's been a downward spiral for the past 20 years.
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