Is Learning Mandarin Important for Living in China?

Whilst you’ll be teaching in the English language, and being paid to do so, learning Mandarin is a fantastic opportunity for many reasons. In this page, we will explore some of the reasons why learning Mandarin could help you become more ingrained in the Chinese community and allow you to benefit so much more from the cultural experience of teaching English abroad.

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How can I eat out in China?

Firstly, eating out is a brilliant way of consuming traditional Chinese food without having to learn how to make it yourself. However, if your Mandarin is limited, and you enjoy eating out, you will be eating the same traditional Chinese food again, and again, until you learn some new vocabulary or get the courage to point at something random on the menu and ask for ‘one of those’. You may be extremely lucky that the customer service within the restaurant speaks English, but this would be unlikely if you are not in an international restaurant in Shanghai, or Beijing. Therefore, if you’re going to learn Mandarin Chinese, and you love eating traditional Chinese food, that’s varied, consider learning for this reason alone.

Cost of Living in China – Transport, Food, Entertainment, Renting Accommodation-4

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How can I visit unique locations in China?

Secondly, a lot of educators visit and teach in China for the sole reason of gaining access to China’s vast landscape and using it for travelling. Travelling to new places is a brilliant way of seeing different ecology, and China has lots to offer. If you are not fortunate to be close to Etravel club, you’ll be hitting the public bus, coach and train routes, navigating through China’s countryside, looking for interesting villages and photography opportunities. The downside to this, however, is you would have most likely found the location in English online, and it’d already be well accustomed to tourists. By learning Mandarin, you can get access to some unique locations, and be able to read the signage to navigate around them effectively.

To combine points one and two together, by learning Mandarin Chinese, you will, therefore, become more culturally immersed through a greater variety of experiences. You’ll be able to visit places and eat food that other international teachers have not heard about. For food, this is especially true if the restaurants are on a floor within a skyscraper and advertised only in Chinese outside the building at ground level. This happens a lot too with other facilities you might go past daily on your commute to work without releasing.

How can I create professional relationships?

Learning Mandarin will also help you build your professional relationships too. With most of your education community at your school being Chinese natives, you will be able to remove the language barrier and enjoy conversations with a larger variety of people. Getting to know your fellow teachers is always enjoyable and will help you break down the barriers of assumed cultural norms, whilst being to pick up fantastic educational tips to integrate into your classroom. We’ve written more about this here.

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Your FAQs

We’ve put together a Resources Page to answer your most frequent questions. From Saving Money, to Getting Your Z-VISA, we have gone into detail there.

Your school will apply for your VISA for you to work directly for them. We’ll be with you every step of the journey. We’ve created our own VISA Support Page. Remember, the VISA you’re applying for is a Z-VISA.

You will have a minimum of a one-year contract, that will be full-time. You can save a lot of money teaching in China, and we’ve put together more information for you to read.

When you are directly employed by the school, they will offer you insurance. This means private level care. Be sure to check your contract for sick days.

You will have to go through your bank to legitimately send money home. To do this, follow the steps they give you. Your school will help support you and will be able to translate anything you need.

That is fantastic news! Not speaking Chinese is great for your students, as you will be able to immerse them in English more. We’ve also put together an Essential Mandarin Guide, and Benefits For Learning Mandarin when you’re exploring.