Teaching English in Greenland

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How to Begin Teaching in Greenland

Greenland is a land like no other.

Greenland is a land like no other. It smells of fish, but this should come as no surprise and apparently, this is something you can get used to! Greenland literally means ‘Land of the People’, which is apt considering the environmentally-conscious mindset of its people and their close relationship to the natural environment. In Greenland, hunting is popular but necessary, and animals are only used when needed. With the lifestyle of the Inuits still a reality today, ice fishing and dog sledding are regular pastimes.
Probably the biggest draw to Greenland is the unspoilt landscapes and the natural environment. This includes vast expanses of ice and numerous icebergs and glaciers. A must-see is the (unpronounceable) Ilulissat: a massive collection of icebergs. You can take a helicopter flight or a boat ride to the glaciers to try and wrap your head around this breathtaking phenomenon. Or better yet, wait for April to August and you can take a night-time cruise under the midnight sun.
Not to worry, while Greenland may not be particularly green in winter, it’s not cold all the time and experiences temperatures of 10°C to 15°C in June, July and August. If you plan on coming here, though, you should probably be a fan of the snow, as temperatures can drop to -20°C during the winter. However, if you enjoy hunting, snow sports and socialising over a good cup of coffee, Greenland is the choice for you.

The midnight sun is a fascinating concept that can be experienced in Greenland. This basically entails the sun not setting from May 25th to July 25th, staying visible throughout the whole day. The midnight sun is an amazing phenomenon that needs to be seen to be experienced. The longest day of the year comes on June 21, this is a national holiday and also the summer solstice. On this day you will find locals enjoying out in the sun or having barbecues.

The capital city of Greenland is Nuuk and almost one-quarter of the population of the country lives here. Nuuk is a hip and fun city to visit. It is the most cosmopolitan town in Greenland and there are plenty of cafes, museums and shops. The city has a stunning backdrop of mountains with the city situated of a giant fiord system, which makes it for easy day trips into fiords and surrounding nature.

Although Greenland has a land size of 2.16 million square kilometres, a real road or railway system that links one town from another. Roads exist within towns, ending on the periphery of each. Travel from town to town is done via plane, boat, helicopter, snowmobile or dogsled. The most common method of transportation is said to be the boat.

 

Teaching Opportunities

There are not many schools in Greenland (as there are not many people), but there is a shortage of teachers. The schools are generally small and so are the class sizes. Linguistically, students here can usually speak Danish and Greenlandic, so English can be quite a challenge and they may be generally quieter than students of other nationalities.
Teaching opportunities are hard to find since preference is given to bilingual teachers but you can try the towns of Qaanaaq, Upernavik or Uummannaq. Opportunities are not always advertised so it is recommended to contact the local schools to find out about vacancies and speak to your local Danish embassy to find out visa requirements.

Teaching Requirements

  • Degree Requirement
    BA/BS required
  • Typical Contract Length
    1 year
  • Peak Hiring Seasons
    August
  • Visa Info
    Work permit (for more than 90 days)
  • Typical Students
    Children
  • Average Monthly Cost of Living in Local Currency
    7,000-10,000 DKK
  • Average Monthly Salary in Local Currency
    7,000-10,000 DKK

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