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In Search of the Sensei

There are times when I think about resurrecting the Ask the Sensei column. Today is one of those times. There appears to be an endless supply of bright-eyed and bushy-tailed university graduates desperate to work in Japan. The latest request for work to land in my inbox comes from Josh.

I found your site through google by typing in "I want a Japan job". I'm in Canada right now and I've been trying to get a Japan job teaching adults for a while now. I have over 4 years of English teaching experience in South Korea. I also look good with a smile and a suit on me. Plus, I have the CELTA certification.

Can you find it in your hearts to help me through your various connections?

If you want, I can send you a recent smiling, suited up photo and my resume.

Thank you for your time

Josh, thanks for the note. Glad to hear you found Let's Japan by typing "I want a Japan job" and scrolling passed all of the job advertisements until you hit LJ.

I'm glad to hear that you can smile and that you look good in a suit because these are two crucial qualities that make an eikaiwa instructor. It's also good you appear to be motivated because that's perfect for teaching seven classes in a row in a highly competitive environment where you need to sell, sell, sell! Might I suggest investing in a plastic hammer and adding a ball toss game to your repertoire if you haven't don so already?

Sadly you've come to the wrong place. LJ isn't in the business of helping people find jobs. You say you have CELTA. Any qualifications or certificates you have will be wasted teaching eikaiwa. Anyway, it sounds like you missed 2007. Not only has the teaching English market been contracting for the past two years, it's flooded with teachers fighting for low-paying jobs. May I ask why do you want to teach in Japan? You need to seriously think about that question. Eikaiwa is drudgery.

PS. No need to send me a picture of your smiling mug. I don't swing that way.

Japan: 

Comments

Shawn: Hilarious reply, while offering sound advice.

Josh: If you are passionate about being an ESL instructor, I can’t possibly see why anyone would be, find a growing market with an actual demand. If you just want to chase girls or collect anime figurines or study Aikido or learn to do the tea ceremony, you might get a low paying job in Japan that would barely allow you to make it from month to month. It’s going to cost you a lot of money to get there and your job will suck, bad. The English teacher thing in Japan is played out. It’s over, done. Find a new frontier.

What exactly is "a Japan job"?

A student of mine has just called me from the court. He's gone down for a long stretch!!!!!

Three and a half, but he will probably get bail to appeal right up to the high court. It is only then that the Monkey will be behind bars

Yeah. My contract says "24 working hours a week" which sounds great until you start and discover that the working time is spread out from 10am to 9pm with huge gaps of free space inbetween lessons. Luckly I'm allowed to leave in those gaps. Not worth it for ¥245,000/m.

How could anyone with internet access not know that teaching in Japan is no longer a sweet deal?

Anyone who monitors the major (or minor - for that matter) can see there just simply isn't any work, no matter how fast your tail wags.

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