Are there travel internships for education majors? Short answer, yes! I interviewed Charlotte who did two different travel internships for education majors while in college. She shares how she found the opportunities, her experiences while there, and more.
The traveling teachers series is all about people who travel and you guessed it – teach! Each interview features a different teacher, traveling to a different place, and teaching a unique group of students. So often we hear of people teaching abroad, but what is it really like? How do you find opportunities?
There are many questions surrounding traveling and teaching. Through this series, I hope you are inspired by the good work going on around the world, learn, and start to think about ways you can travel and teach yourself. I’m excited to share internships for education majors with you today.
If you plan to be a traveling teacher, a TESOL certification is a great way to start. I got mine through International Open Academy for just $19! Highly recommend this as a first step in your traveling teacher journey.
This week I am excited to bring you a story about Charlotte’s experience doing internships for education majors! Charlotte and I connected via Instagram and she has taught two amazing places – Australia and Italy! What a dream. She took the opportunity during her undergraduate degree to teach in these incredible places and shares more about how you can too. You can find her on Instagram here.
What inspired you to start teaching?
I would love to say that I’ve always had a loud calling for traveling, but the truth is, it’s more like a quiet, insistent whisper. My love of teaching and connecting with students has taken me to Australia and Italy. When I received the opportunity to travel to Australia and be an intern (basically a student teacher) in a classroom, I took it.
The idea of connecting to students in another country and supporting them on their learning journey was what really drew me in. Similarly in Italy, the study abroad experience that put me in the classroom with 4th graders was incredibly special. The opportunities to meet new people was what ultimately drew me to teaching abroad.
How long have you taught and where?
I am a new teacher, with almost 1 full year of teaching under my belt. My formal training took place in South Carolina. The teaching experiences in Australia and Italy add to about 3 months, combined.
How did you find your internships for education majors?
Both of these opportunities came during my years in college. The trip to Australia was a summer-long internship in a primary school. The trip to Italy was a 3-week experience with preschools around Reggio Emilia.
I found the internship in Australia through a third party company called API Abroad. I was perusing the study abroad fair at my college and got to talking with representatives from API. I worked with them to get the internship.
The trip to Italy was a faculty-directed program specifically for education majors. We spent time with professors exploring Italy and touring multiple schools around the area.
Were any of your expenses covered with the teaching experience?
In both locations, housing was covered. I was on my own for food and travel expenses.
Were you able to spend time traveling and exploring the country while teaching?
I was able to travel along the east coast of Australia. I visited a friend I had met a few years back and spent the first week of a two week holiday with her family. During the weekends, I traveled to local beaches and enjoyed the beautiful scenery of the coast. I also took the opportunity on holiday to travel via a sailboat to Whitsunday Islands. I had never slept on a sailboat before and it was quite the experience! While in Italy, I traveled to Florence, Parma, Bologna, and Venice. These short weekend excursions were only a taste of the beautiful country.
What were interactions with students like?
In Australia, the year 1 students I taught were so full of life and energy. They were the biggest highlight of my entire trip. As a student teacher, I worked closely with the primary teacher in the classroom. We co-taught lessons and small groups. The students were always eager to teach me about who they were and what their life was like in Australia. I learned as much from them as they did from me.
In Italy, I visited students during the school day. These students were always interested in learning more and asking questions. Watching them explore the world around them was inspiring and gave me a lot to think about how we deliver instruction in American classrooms.
What was your favorite part of your teaching experiences?
My favorite part of teaching abroad was the abundance of opportunities to try new things. Being away from home was already a stretch of my comfort zone, so I embraced it with all that I could. I explored everywhere from well-known cities to my local neighborhood of residence. I tried high tea in Australia and ate all of the gelato I could stomach while in Italy.
Visiting tourist and local attractions was so exciting for me. When at home, I feel distracted and consumed by my to-do list. In these two countries, I chose to be present and alert to all that was around me.
What is one piece of advice you have for someone who wants to teach abroad?
My advice is: go. Pack your bag(s) and just go. It’s worth it.
You can find more specific advice and information on international internships for education majors by reaching out to Charlotte on Instagram. Find more about other traveling teachers on my resource page!
Interested in more stories of short-term teaching experiences? Consider doing a teacher travel opportunity.Consider doing a teacher travel opportunity. Here are some others you might be interested in: