Teaching English in Uruguay

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How to Begin Teaching in Uruguay

This nation is one of the smallest countries in South America, with 50% of the population living in the capital, Montevideo. It has some rain throughout the year, but Uruguay is well known in the region for its high winds due to the fact that it has no shield from the mountains that grace other neighbouring countries.

Having said this, Uruguay has lush grasslands with low fertile plains and hills. In the cities, it is possible to see the splendour of Spanish and Portuguese colonial architecture. As with its neighbour Argentina, the main cultural activity in Uruguay is tango. This can be found, along with other cultural pursuits, in the capital Montevideo. Uruguay has a long literary tradition, with writers such as Jules Supervielle and Magdalena Helguera. It also has many festivals. Two of the most important are Desfile de las Llamadas (a parade which is the highlight of the summer carnival) and Uruguayan Independence day on August 25th. This is celebrated with fireworks and celebrations nationwide. The language of Uruguay is Spanish.

Uruguay is also one of the most stable countries in South America. It has low crime rates and due to increased trade with North America, it now also has a large export market.

 

Teaching Opportunities

For many, Uruguay is seen more as a short-term option than one for a long-term TEFL career. The reason for this is that there are only limited opportunities for well-paid jobs. This means that a 120-hour TEFL certificate will be required. The students in Uruguay are friendly and lively to teach, and classes are available for all age ranges and walks of life.  This includes children as well as business professionals.

The cost of living in Uruguay is low, but this also means that the salaries are low. This can become problematic when you need to teach at several sites, but your travel expenses are generally not reimbursed by your employer. There is also the danger that in some institutions that they will insist that you are on call from 8 a.m. – 8 p.m., which is an unreasonable request if you are not being compensated for these overtime hours. It is also extremely difficult to secure a job from outside the country. This means that you will need to pay for your own flight to the country, and have enough savings for the first 4-6 weeks of your time in the country. It seems that teaching in Uruguay is great if you want to gain experience, or to have a job that allows you to explore a different culture.

Teaching Requirements

  • Degree Requirement
    Not required
  • Typical Contract Length
    6 - 12 months
  • Peak Hiring Seasons
    March - August
  • Visa Info
    Work visa
  • Typical Students
    Business professionals, children
  • Average Monthly Cost of Living in Local Currency
    6,230-10,435 UYU
  • Average Monthly Salary in Local Currency
    6,230-10,435 UYU

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