Teaching English in Palestine: English is one of the most important languages in the world. No one can doubt the importance of this language in connecting people from different countries together. It is a language that can be used in diverse situations, for example to travel, study abroad, or work for a multinational company.
English is spoken by populations in over 80 countries across the world. English is also the primary language in many schools, and the number of those who study English as a foreign language increases every day. Palestine includes English within its schools’ curriculums, as well as in most university curriculums. Unfortunately, this does not mean that Palestinians are good at English. Many Palestinians cannot speak that language well, especially because there is a scarcity of international or foreign visitors to talk with and practice the language with. This is due to the security situation that followed the second intifada in 2000, which subsequently left Palestine more isolated.
Therefore, Palestinians, especially students, are eager to speak and understand English, as for them it represents an opportunity to explore the culture of the worlds’ nations, as the possibility to either work or study abroad, as English is often requires.
Internationals who decide to come and teach English in Palestine found that they succeeded in improving their Palestinian students’ conversational skills. Some may wonder if it is difficult to teach them English if they have such limited knowledge. However, in most cases it is possible to teach students who are already at an intermediate level, with focus needed on their conversational skills.
Do I need to hold a degree to teach English in Palestine?
It is preferable to hold a degree in teaching English as a foreign language, but it is definitely not necessary, since the focus will be on improving students’ conversational skills. Your task as a teacher would be to encourage them to speak by using interactive questions, educational games, videos and other activities. These do not require a degree. What you need is a good knowledge of English. Even if you are not a native speaker, you are welcome to come and teach English in Palestine if you are of a sufficient level.
Are there any organizations, institutions or educational centers which offer such an opportunity?
There are many organizations which offer places to those who want to teach English to Palestinians. The Excellence Center is a reliable place, which offers you a chance to teach English to Palestinian students. It also has a number of local English teachers who can help you to do your volunteer work easily and enjoyably. The Excellence Center is one of the top centers of cultural exchange in Palestine, and has hosted more than 160 internationals during the last 5 years, who have come from 27 countries around the world. Over 10,000 students have participated in English courses organized by the Center.
The Excellence also offers you Arabic lessons, where you can learn Arabic and of course you can teach English in Palestine. Please check the Center’s website at: www.excellencenter.org. for more information. You will also get the chance to experience Palestinian daily life, to interact with locals, to make new friends, to visit historical sites, to taste delicious Palestinian food, and also to understand first-hand more about the conflict.