How to be a Teacher and Travel the World

How to be a Teacher and Travel the World

You can’t be a teacher and not have a love for children.

There was never a point growing up when I thought to myself “I want to be a teacher”.  I didn’t even enjoy playing “school” when my other friends wanted to pretend we were in class and pick a teacher.  You know those games we played as kids?  We would line up a bunch of stuffed animals in chairs and two or three of us would  be the teacher by walking around with a clipboard and pencil, pretending to catch a couple of teddy bears swapping notes.  It wasn’t my favorite game.  I loved playing business, I wanted to be a doctor or an inventor.   Being a teacher was not at the top of my list.

I graduated with a degree in Psychology with plans to be a Therapist.  I had always wanted to learn Spanish, and right after being accepted to a masters program for counseling, I threw caution to the wind and decided to travel instead.  After a year of language school I came back to Texas and needed to work.  I happen to love kids and when I heard about the shortage of Bilingual teachers, I decided to apply for a teaching internship.  

How to be a Teacher and Travel the World

Hiking the Indian Nose In Guatemala on a Summer Break

Why a Career as a Teacher is Great for Single People Who Want to Travel

The great thing about teaching is, if you love kids, and have a degree, you can get a Teaching Certificate while working and being paid as a teacher.  It is quite a lot of work for one year, the internship involves working weekends, and you find yourself getting to work before the sun comes up and getting home after dark.  If you can make it through the year then you have a couple months of recovery, and for the more adventurous, two months of travel!

Although I no longer teach, I would recommend the job to anyone with a heart for kids and a longing for wanderlust.  Teaching allows you to invest in the lives of your students, be active in a community, but also escape every summer to whichever place your heart desires.  

How to be a Teacher and Travel the World

Scuba Diving in Honduras on Summer Break

Teaching is a great career, but you still have to save in order to travel.

If you are really frugal throughout the year and save a few hundred a month you will have some amazing summer experiences traveling.  I spent many summers in Central America learning to surf, practicing my Spanish, meeting other travelers, hiking volcanoes, and having a blast.  I won’t lie and tell you the life of a teacher is easy, it’s not.  You wake up early, you long for the weekend, and when the weekend comes you dread Monday, especially that first year.  Though it isn’t a perfect job, and there are always hard parts to it, it does get easier after that first year.  

How to be a Teacher and Travel the World

Finding a Starfish in Panama, Don’t Worry I didn’t Pick Him Up.

I was able to save up money every summer to travel, sometimes I even took trips over the holidays. I spent a Spring Break in Spain and a Christmas in Costa Rica.  If you make travel a priority in your spending during the year, you can easily have money to travel.  You will also have money to go out on the weekends during the year.  

If you dislike kids, I would encourage you to choose a different career.  It isn’t worth your whole year to be miserable (and to make the students miserable) just so you can travel in the summer.  The summer goes by fast and the work year is long.  You have early mornings and long days with 30 minutes for lunch (which most of that lunch is spent in the copy room eating your sandwich standing up). You have to stay late most days.  All that work isn’t worth it if you don’t enjoy the time with the students.

If you love kids then teaching is a perfect fit for you already, because it’s all about the kids.  If you’ve dreamed of having a job that allows you to travel, I can guarantee you that teaching is the best of both worlds.  It’s a very rewarding career, in so many ways. But if your heart is in traveling or even volunteering in other countries in the summer, teaching could be a good fit for you.

I hope you found this post helpful!  If you have any questions for me about teaching or what its like to save during the year and travel in the summers, ask away!  I am here to help!

Talk to you soon!

How to be a Teacher and Travel the World

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