Teaching Internationally: Some Personal FAQs We’ve Been Answering

December 8, 2016

Naturally, with our heartbreaking announcement a couple of weeks ago, we have been getting a lot of emails, texts, and calls from people wanting to know more. It has dawned on me that the life of an international teacher and the idea of teaching internationally is (pun coming) quite foreign to many.

Where to?

By far the biggest question is where are you guys going next? Ohhhh, if only it were that easy. The simple answer is – no clue. We have no idea where we’ll be a year from now which is scary, yes, but also exciting – if you decide to look at it that way. As is the case in life, we have choices in the form of where we apply but ultimately, the universe (and headmasters) makes the choice. I like to think that we will end up exactly where we should. After all, we hadn’t even thought Dominican Republic was an option until Jack Delman, the headmaster at the time, offered Husband a job – and look how that turned out.

Ok, so where are YOU applying to?

We are pretty open to all the places, minus some that, for me, are just on the Really Doubtful List (never say never). We did, after all, decide to teach internationally to explore the world and that means all of it, not just the ones that sound like a movie set. Long answer short, we have applied to every region besides Oceania and Antartica and that’s only because they don’t have anything to apply to. So, literally, most the world is a possibility and that’s kinda cool. Here are some places we’re looking at and have applied to:

teaching internationally
All the world’s a possibility


Nairobi, Kenya

Dar Es Salam , Tanzania


Yokohama, Japan

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Penang, Malaysia

Cebu, Phillipines

Manila, Phillipines

Hanoi, Vietnam

Shanghai, China


Belgium, Brussels

Sofia, Bulgaria

Prague, Czech

Bucharest, Romania

Berlin, Germany


Dubai, United Arab Emirates


Guadalajara, Mexico


Buenos Aires, Argentina

When will you know where you’ll be teaching internationally?

Hahahaha. Funny question. The answer: who knows? Maybe tomorrow. Maybe not for months. Recruiting at job fairs starts (more or less) in late October and runs through February and sometimes people get hired in later months since some admins wait for the job fairs to make decisions.

I’m not trying to downplay the stress of it; it’s pretty stressful to be abroad and have no idea where you’ll be a year from now. And I imagine, it’s even more stressful on Husband who is the one doing the applying. But while it’s stressful – absolutely – it’s also pretty typical. It’s a bit of a waiting game – which I’m terrible at – with a dash of lucky timing and a glob of Have we done everything we could do? And we have. So now we wait.

In the meanwhile, Husband and I try not to freak out on the same day. We’ve set a calendar so we know which days  he can panic and which days I could lose my shi… stuff.  It seems to be working out pretty well. Today is not my day which is why I sound calm and collected.

teaching internationally

Will you come home?

As my mom clearly laid out for me the other night, “You know you have a hot plate of food and a table to eat at here, so you don’t have to worry about going hungry.” Home is always a possibility; it’s on the list (remember the Really Doubtful, Never say Never List?) but it’s pretty low on the list. It isn’t that we don’t looooove the States, and more specifically New Jersey, it’s just that our quality of life, overall, is better abroad. With that being said, it’s good to know so many of you would love to have us back.

this whole “teaching internationally” thing seems tough

We talk constantly about how lucky we are to be living the kind of life that we have helped make, that we have been a part of designing. The kind of life where tough decisions sound like Should we live in Brussels or Dubai? Will we experience the culture of Mexico or the Safaris in Kenya? The kind of life where we know we have a safety net at home that would not only catch us but feed us, love us, and take care of our kids.

It’s an interesting year for us, for sure, but our hearts are full. They are full of love and excitement and fear and courage and sadness and happiness – full of every emotion – and it reminds me of a quote by Jim Valvano “To me there are three things everyone should do every day. Number one is laugh. Number two is think — spend some time time in thought. Number three, you should have your emotions move you to tears. If you laugh, think and cry, that’s a heck of a day.”

I guess, it’s been a heck of a year.

P.S. Finding the silver lining and this quote about moving forward

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