Japan has always been one of the top places where teachers can go to teach English with a company like Interac. Aside from the good salary, teachers have the opportunity to experience the unique culture of the country. People go to Japan to experience how Western modernity has blended well with Eastern traditions.
Japan is also among the oldest civilizations in the world. Visitors can look forward to visiting one of the thousands of temples and Zen gardens in the country. Moreover, the natural beauty of the country will also leave visitors in awe at the way the Japanese were able to preserve it even with the modern conveniences available in the cities.
At this point, you may already be looking for an English teaching company in Japan. Well, you don’t waste your time since we did the work for you to help you decide if teaching in Japan is the right option for you. You can try exploring the possibility of working with Interac in Japan.
Interac is the biggest provider of foreign teachers to the government of Japan. Established in 1972, the company provides assistant language teachers (ALT) to different elementary, junior high school, and high schools all over Japan.
In addition to schools, Interac has also provided professional English teachers to different government and commercial organizations in Japan. The company was initially a provider of training programs to major companies in Japan. These programs consisted of intercultural understanding programs and English language learning programs. In the 1990s, the company became a private ALT provider for the Japanese government.
This is unlike many other teachers in Japan who work at private institutes known as Eikaiwas.
ALTs work with Japanese teachers inside the classroom to ensure the efficient presentation of the assigned English curriculum of the school. This means ALTs may have to do the following:
ALTs are also requested to review and comment on the home and other written work of the students. They may also conduct one-on-one or even group progress assessments from time-to-time.
But ALTs are more than just simple language teachers. Aside from sharing their knowledge of the English language and English communication skills, they are also cultural ambassadors. They will share their background and culture while teaching the English language. This means the students will also learn about the culture of ALTs while improving their English skills.
Most Interac teachers come from North America since the company requires its teachers to be native-level English speakers. The company has other requirements for its teachers.
Express goals within the company
“Where do you want to be in five years?” is a common interview question. However, the optimal response may change depending on the culture. Japanese companies still expect full commitment from their potential employees despite the decline of lifetime employment and the fact that English teaching contracts are generally one to two years. It’s tempting to slip into a narrative that expresses high ambitions and motivation, but many Japanese employers do not appreciate applicants who plainly state that their goal leads them to eventually leave them. Instead, they want to hear interest moving up in their school and the willingness to learn from their current staff and resources. While transparent communication is looked upon positively, this is more of a values difference when approaching employment that applicants should keep in mind.
Nearing the end of the interview, the interviewer will ask what questions you have about the position, school, or company. Asking for clarification on something touched upon during the interview is in-bounds, but there are numerous questions that should be avoided. It’s not the end of the world to ask about visa sponsorships, benefits, or relocation options, however, this information should have been found on their site or requested during a correspondence prior to the interview. Arriving to the interview well-informed and therefore asking astute questions will help you stand out from the crowd.
1) Full-time work deserves a full-time contract
Although most English teachers in Japan — whether they work as an ALT or eikaiwa (private English conversation school) teacher — would say that they work full-time hours, not all of us are on full-time contracts.
The old method that some companies used to get around these obligations was the infamous “29-and-a-half-hour contract,” since they were following the now disputed guideline that said anyone who works less than 30 hours per week did not automatically qualify for health insurance and pension coverage.
Since one teacher challenged this ordinance and won their case, this particular form of contract is not as prevalent as it used to be. However, teachers do need to be careful. If a job is advertised as a full-time position, make sure at the interview that the contract is also full-time. A contract for less than a 30-hour week for a job that requires you to be at school for 40 hours or more should set alarm bells ringing.
My Japanese is not great, but I introduced myself and discussed a game I did in Japanese as an ALT for Interac. Even though I don’t explain it well, I give it my best and said students gradually learned English while playing it and having fun. This is an extensive self-introduction. A short introduction only is about your home town, job, schooling, or whatever other hobbies you want to discuss.
B. ” I choose the JET Program because of its reputation. I know from research that JET supports candidates with orientation, training, and an essential network of connections. I believe JET will help me become a well-rounded ALT, so I can support my students and JTEs in the classroom. For example, I have never taught abroad; however, I know from research that there are invaluable resources available from sites such as KumaJET and AkitaJET who are there support ALTs with free resources and activities to ALTs who aren’t from those areas or regions…
B. “I believe there are a number of ways I can involve myself with the local community and make a positive impact. For example, I spoke with JET Alumni on how they made an impact in their local community, and one way I found that was very interesting was joining a local taiko club. I’ve loved music ever since high school. I used to play the drums, which is very similar, but so different in many ways. The taiko is just one dream that requires a lot of strength to strum…for these reasons I believe I can make an impact on the local community while acquiring new skills to bring back to my country from playing the taiko.”