A Day in the Life of a Teacher in Japan: Experience Teaching Abroad

Hey! My name is Lilah, and I’d love to take you through a day in my life as an English teacher in Japan. While teaching wasn’t something I pictured myself doing at this stage in my career, I couldn’t be more grateful that I pursued this path. The experiences I’ve had so far have been incredible!

Teaching Abroad in Japan: A Unique Daily Routine

After deciding to teach English abroad in Japan, I quickly learned that day-to-day life varies based on factors like the company, daily schedule, working hours, and even the city. I live in Yokohama and work in Tokyo, so my day starts with a 45-minute train commute. In Japan, it’s common for companies hiring foreign teachers to provide commuter passes, making my journey stress-free. I spend this time reading, catching up on emails, or practicing my Japanese language skills.

Working Hours and Responsibilities

At my company, we work with kids from the afternoon until around 8 PM. A significant part of my shift is spent prepping for lessons and school events planned later in the month. Eikawas (English language schools that operate after normal Japanese school hours) often host weekend parties focused on student retention and promotion. When I’m not leading lessons, I’m preparing for these events by printing decorations, organizing crafts, or planning activities.

A Dynamic Teaching Environment

My company also operates more like a daycare than a traditional eikawa. My average day includes facilitating snack time, exercise, arts & crafts, and even speech & presentation skills in addition to English language and phonics lessons. Initially, I was skeptical about adapting to this environment, having never worked with kids so extensively before. However, I now enjoy how transitioning between activities keeps the day engaging and helps the kids stay focused.

Building Connections and Observing Progress

One of the most rewarding aspects of teaching in Japan has been building connections with my students. Having a semi-permanent position at a single school allows me to observe their development and English improvement in real-time. I look forward to the year ahead and encourage anyone unsure about teaching abroad to give it a shot—you never know how much you’ll enjoy it until you try!

If you’re considering teaching abroad in Japan or elsewhere, I highly recommend it. The experience is enriching, and the impact you can have on your students is immeasurable. For more information on how to start your journey, explore resources and programs that offer support and guidance every step of the way.

For more info about Travelbud’s Teach in Japan program, click here.

About Frances Mignonne Weiner

Franci, our Graphic Designer and Social Media Manager, brings a unique blend of creativity to TravelBud. At 23, she holds a degree in Humanities from Stellenbosch University and is currently completing her postgraduate studies in Sustainable Development. Born and raised in Plettenberg Bay, South Africa—a beautiful coastal town nestled in the heart of the Garden Route—Franci is an ocean and mountain lover at heart. When she's not crafting captivating visuals for TravelBud, you can find Franci frolicking in the mountains, trail running, or swimming in the ocean.
Filed under  Teacher Diaries • Japan 

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