Making Your Schedule Work For You While Living Abroad

Making your schedule work for you while living abroad is crucial to life abroad. It’s important to manage your time to take advantage of all possibilities

Although a year sounds like a long time, it flies by before you can even realize it. Being in a new country and missing out on everything it has to offer is a mistake some travelers come to regret in the future.

Making a plan for what to do in your spare time can prevent future feelings of regret or feelings of missing out on potential self-improvement and adventuring. Although teaching abroad will occupy a chunk of your time: making lesson plans, preparing projects and activities, writing progress reports for students; that doesn’t go to say you will not have free time to travel and continue to improve yourself.

Potential Schedules

Most people who come to teach in Asia have a few options with their work schedules.

One option is to work afternoons and evenings in “training schools” or “cram schools.” These schools often cater to students ranging from elementary school all the way to adults. Work hours at such schools after start around 1pm and last until about 6 or 7pm. Usually these schedules will range from Monday – Friday or working on Saturdays or Sundays.

This kind of schedule allows for time during the mornings and late nights to spend your time exploring a new city or working on your own interests.

Another option is working kindergarten which is typically a Monday – Friday schedule from mornings until afternoons. This schedule allows for guaranteed weekends off and for time during the afternoons and nights to either go out and meet people or spend time pursuing personal interests.

Pursuing Your Interests

The options of things to do while in a foreign country often outweigh those in your home country. That goes to say, while in your home country you’re less willing to travel and see the things around you because, well, it’s always there. Who knows when you may come back to the country you teach abroad in.

Taking time to learn the local language should definitely be high on the list of things to do while in a foreign country. If you have time in the mornings or evening there are many places that will offer classes for reasonable prices. Studying by yourself is also another option; however, obviously requires more self motivation. This option will also require you to really manage your time and really dedicate it to buckling down and studying.

If your city has convenient public transportation take the time to explore your new city and surroundings. The best way to learn about a new culture and environment is to go out and explore it!

If you enjoy learning more about culture and history, visit some museums during your free time. Most big cities will have art exhibitions which are always a key to understanding the culture, history, and wheels of change happening in a country.

Whatever option you choose, grab hold the opportunity to explore new things and learn more about yourself!

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About 

Vadim Rubin is an ethnic Belarussian learning to speak Mandarin Chinese. He is a coach, teacher, linguist, athlete, and an aspiring world traveler. As an avid volleyball player and coach, he spends a majority of his time on the court with sweaty volleyball junkies. Off the court he enjoys to travel, write, and teach world languages. He is now back in Taiwan teaching English, traveling, and discovering what life has to offer.

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