Deciding on a Shenzhen EF employment...
I am looking at spending the next few years teaching English, maybe not all in China. The great part about this contract is it starts in April right after my current seasonal job ends. I've grown really tired of having a month or two downtime between my summer and winter jobs. I have never been to China but have been reading quite a bit about it over the last few years. I am for sure going over to learn Mandarin and experience the culture, not for partying. I've been an educator most of the last 10 years (coaching/outdoor rec with a bit of classroom).
I don't have any TEFL cert, another reason why this contract is tempting. The other idea I'm thinking about is take a CELTA course in Thailand next April then start looking for work then. With a degree, a CELTA cert, and currently being in Thailand it would be very likely I could find work in May (in China)?
My ideal situation is teaching at a university in Harbin, Kunming, or Chengdu. Is settling for teaching kids/teens in Shenzhen a poor introduction to this field and country? It sounds like they do offer some free cert training. Or would I be much better off in the long-run paying the $2500 for the IHBangkok CELTA course?
I've read everything I can find online about EF. I can deal with the summer session long hours and push from the management and parents. My biggest worries are I won't get a mix of ages and EF will be unsupportive of me after my contract for moving somewhere else within the company (either a new location or to start teaching adults).
I do want to become a good teacher and I am the type of person to jump into something and work to learn the ropes. Posts like this, http://raoulschinasaloon.com/index.php?topic=71.msg123950#msg123950
, make me consider English First because it sounds like I would learn a lot and would be a strong start down the professional path for teaching ESL.
Anyone able to voice anything new to help my decision? Thanks!