7 reasons to teach English in Germany
Germany is the powerhouse of Western-Central Europe. A huge slab of the continent, it rolls from the Bavarian Alps all the way to the windy shores of the North Sea and the Baltic. Between those borders, you’ll find handsome Saxon towns and rollicking cities doused in beer, farmlands and river valleys, and plenty, plenty more. The chance to teach English in Germany is open to anyone with a 120-hour TEFL certificate, native-level English, and a BA degree. Here are just seven short reasons why you might want to seize the opportunity…
The topography of Germany is one that’ll have all mountain lovers licking their lips. Yes, the north and heartlands of the nation might be rolling flats and sand dunes. But the south is spiked with the world-famous Alps. Just an hour’s train from Munich (one of the hotspots for those looking to teach English in Germany) and you could find yourself clambering up the jagged 2,962-meter Zugspitze or whizzing down the ski pistes of Garmisch-Partenkirchen. Going in other directions could bring you to the charming highland villages of Berchtesgaden or the romantic castles of the Schwangau area. Boots at the ready, hikers!
Germany is steeped in history and culture. Once a land of barbarian tribes and Celtic forest dwellers, it was colonized by the Romans in the centuries BC. Those ancient roots are still visible in the great theaters, the imposing Porta Nigra, and the arched bridges of Trier. Alternatively, make for Museum Island in Berlin, which showcases amazing Roman relics alongside Greek and Byzantine treasures from all over the world. More recent history can also bring you to the old Bavarian kingly castle of Neuschwanstein or the chocolate-box medieval settlements of the so-called Romantic Road.
To teach English in Germany is to venture to the home of European Romanticism. The peaks of the Bavarian mountains and the brooding Black Forest was the terrain that inspired the likes of Caspar David Friedrich in the 1800s to recreate visions of sublime nature in art. More recently, Germany was a leading force in the avant-garde, drawing cubists and futurists from across the world to cities like Dresden Cologne to push the boundaries of painting and sculpture. To put it more simply: You won’t ever be short of galleries!
White sausage and schnitzel, pork knuckles and bratwurst, sauerkraut and spatzle noodles – Germany has some weird and wonderful foodie creations. Often described as hearty and heavy, the cuisine tends to be on the rustic and simple side. It also never shies away from carbs or – sorry veggies! – meat, and is always best eaten in traditional German taverns with a side of…
German beer! Few countries on the planet can match the fame of Germany when it comes to brewing up hops and barley and malts. The southerly region of Bavaria is – of course – the most famous haven for beer drinkers. You’ll want to head there around the end of September to catch the annual Oktoberfest in full flow. There’ll be Oompah bands, foot stomping, huge steins of brew, and parties until the early hours.
Germany might not have an overload of TEFL-teaching jobs. However, it really is about quality of quantity in these parts. Pay in the economic hub of Europe soars to some of the highest levels on the continent. Some of the best-paid academic positions report wages just shy of $5,000 USD/month. More likely, you’ll be looking at something in the region of $1,900-2,500 a month when you begin. Still, not a bad take-home, eh?
Germany is consistently rated as one of the most liveable countries on the globe. Good rent controls keep the cost of flats – even in major cities like Berlin – nice and low. Labor protection laws mean workers enjoy regular holidays and pay reviews. What’s more, diversity reigns supreme: Germany has a record for welcoming people from all walks of life, faiths, sexual orientations – you name it. If you’re considering applying to teach English in Germany but worry about how easy it will be to fit in and create a niche of your own, you’re probably worrying unnecessarily!
If you can think of any more awesome reasons to teach English in Germany this year, be sure to drop your thoughts in the comments below. Alternatively, check out our courses page to see more details on the 120-hour TEFL you’ll need to start applying for jobs in the country.