Travel & Teach - Brazil
If you are headed here, you will find yourself teaching in the largest and most populous country in South America. Brazil gained its independence in 1822 after three hundred years under Portuguese control, which provided the country with its language. With large quantities of natural resources to exploit, Brazil became Latin America's leading economic power in the latter half of the 20th Century.
The country has been expanding its presence in world markets. However, like many Latin American countries, it has suffered from high inflation. In 1994 the Government sought to remedy this by pegging the currency (the Real) to the US dollar through the ‘Real Plan’. This helped to stabilise the economy and in January 1999, the Brazilian Central Bank announced that the real would no longer be pegged to the US dollar and it is now independent. The economy has continued to recover, although there is still a great disparity in incomes, with cases of extreme poverty. In spite of this, the stabilisation of the economy over the past few years has led to an increase in the demand for English language teaching and generally better pay and working conditions.
Brazil resounds to a Samba beat, where football and Catholicism are seemingly equal in importance. Football is the lifeblood of the country and arouses the passions of its peoples.
If you are thinking of embarking on a Latin American adventure, then the warmth of the climate and the population can make Brazil one of the better choices for the new EFL teacher.
However, crime and pollution are still factors in the big cities. General common sense should be enough to keep you safe although it is never wise to be complacent in these matters.
British Council http://www.britishcouncil.org/
British Council in Brazil: http://www.britishcouncil.org/br/brasil.htm
Brazilian Embassy UK: http://brazil.embassyhomepage.com/
Brazilian Embassy USA: http://www.brasilemb.org/
Brazilian National Tourist Office: http://www.braziltourism.org/
Need more info: Teaching English Abroad available through our bookshop page
Global English students are working all over the world with their accredited TESOL certificates. Find out
how TESOL training from Global English has made a difference to their lives:
I got offered the job teaching, 3x2 hour lessons on a Monday and a Wednesday, to advanced teenagers (12-17 incl) and then a two hr lesson on a Tuesday and a Thursday evening. The wealthy in Belo Horizonte send their children to Red Balloon, with the teenagers to 'Reds', an affiliate.
Ten of us went for the jobs with myself and a Russian girl being the only 'gringo's'. Although I obviously had an advantage, it was pretty competitive. We spent a week learning about teaching and having to do presentations for all age groups (simulating teaching). Its only about 15R an hour (6 pounds), but I am doing it for the experience and to learn how to teach so I can teach privately and earn 40R an hour !! (15 pounds). Please see the photos attached.
I have got some cards done for private teaching lessons as you can earn up to 50R an hr which is quite considerable here (20 Pounds).
I’ve been here two months now and every day is a learning day as they say. I find it astonishing, the gulf in wealth between those that have and those that don´t, very different to England where there seems to be that large middle class. I brought some football kits over for the kids in the local favela. The people seem great and very approachable, but I have to say I’m itching to get back down to the Rio countryside (Cabo Frio).
Travel and Teach
Unusually for Latin America, Brazil relies heavily on very well educated locals to teach English. Recruiting foreign nationals to teach EFL occurs rarely, so you will not see many positions advertised worldwide in the EFL press, nor on the Internet. It is also a bureaucratic nightmare. But despite this there should be ample work for EFL teachers. To gain this work you may have to travel to Brazil or try and gain work through an agency specialising in South America (see Teaching English Abroad (link to book – see page 1 this doc), for more details on these). The appropriate work visas will also be difficult to secure and although it is easy to work unofficially (and many do), Brazil is one country where this is not such a good idea. This is Brazil is stricter than some other Latin American countries, where working without the appropriate papers is largely ignored.
Unless you have 2 years proven experience and a degree it will be almost impossible to gain a work permit. Even then, the process is a lengthy one. An employer can apply on your behalf for a temporary work visa although they are unlikely to embark on this rather time consuming course unless a long-term contract is offered. Crossing the border can renew tourist visas, which are valid for 6 months. It is wise to start the process by applying through the Brazilian Embassy.
As previously stated, an initial contract may prove difficult to obtain. But if you are able to get a visa, the minimum you should expect for a full teaching timetable is around $350 (US) per month. This will be comfortable to live on locally but will not amount to much outside of the country. You might like to think about starting to look for work around February and there are flexible contracts available. Day to day living is relatively cheap, although accommodation is quite expensive in the big cities. In addition you should investigate private health insurance and call your doctor for the latest information on the inoculations recommended before travelling to the region – note that AIDS is also a big problem in Brazil.