GeoVisions Blog

How Many Days Can I Volunteer Abroad In [Insert Country] For $1,000?

Posted by Randy LeGrant on Tue, Nov 26, 2013

currency chartI just read an article on The Expeditioner site entitled How Many Days Can I Travel In [Insert Country Here] With $1,000?  It was interesting.  The comments ran from "this is all a load of crap" written by someone who can obviously either spend MUCH more than that or is happy to sleep on a park bench ... to "this is the best thing I've ever seen."

So I do want to type in here that your mileage may vary.

But I used the list to test out pricing on our own programs.  So for example, if I look at the pricing of our programs in France, Italy and Spain, I get a huge savings by going with GeoVisions.  The Expeditioner site said it would take 22 days to blow through $1,000 in the Euro zone.  That's $45.45 per day.  In 22 days you'd have to leave.

On our Conversation Corps France program, you can stay a month for $1,549.  That's $52 a day.  But you can also stay 60-days for $27 a day and 90-days for $19 a day.  On Conversation Corps Spain it will cost only $38/day for 30-days.  Compare that to The Expeditioner's spending of $45 a day.  If you stay with us 60-days, it drops to $19 a day and 90-days will cost $13 a day.

Asia is a good deal for travelers also.  The Expeditioner spent $1,000 in 43 days.  So looking at Conversation Corps Thailand ... we cost $53 a days compared to The Expeditioner at $23 a day.  But when you stay in Thailand 90-days (why would you travel that far to stay only 43 days) the cost goes down to $18 per day.  Still less than The Expeditioner's findings.

Keep in mind also, as you read their article and look at the chart for your favorite country that they built their budget on a room in a hostel each night, street food and minimal transport.

As a member of the Conversation Corps, you have your own private bedroom, 3 home-cooked meals a day, an orientation, and insurance (not covered on the examples in The Expeditioner's findings).

If you're well traveled and you've done a great deal of travel on your own, let us know if you agree with the findings.  No matter how you cut it, if you choose a 90-day GeoVisions program, you're going to spend half as much as if you did it on your own.

Read more of their article and have a look at their chart here.

Tags: Conversation Corps-France, Conversation Corps-Spain, Conversation Corps Thailand, Conversation Corps-Italy, Conversation Corps

Teach In Thailand With Students Aged 11 To 60

Posted by Randy LeGrant on Mon, Sep 24, 2012

Each week, GeoVisions posts an actual email from a Conversation Corps tutor, a Conversation Partner or a full time teacher abroad on a GeoVisions program.  We call the series, Help Me Teach Abroad.

Our Help Me Teach desk is manned by Betsy Bruneau, a full time ESL teacher here.  She gives teaching assistance to GeoVisions' participants by phone, email and Skype.  It is a FREE service that GeoVisions provides to all of our participants and they can have access to Betsy before they depart and during the program.  If we can help you be an amazing teacher or tutor, you will be happy, your students or host family will be happy, you will tell people they should try this out and we will have a repeat family and school.  And that's how we want to roll.

Browse By Tag BoxYou can find a lot of these posts by clicking on the Help Me Teach tag.  You can find that over on the right side of this screen.  The tag box looks like this one.  We put all of our Help Me Teach posts right there.  And who knows...one of these days we'll have enough to make up our own E-Book, which of course we'll give away for FREE.

Hi Betsy,

I've just arrived in Thailand to teach a mother, grandmother, and her young grandson .... Ages 11 to 60....there might be some other people coming too.

I have no idea where to start and looking at the resources. It doesn't seem to help me to assist with people who speak zero english and me no Thai. They really have no English so I can't even rely on one to translate or to lead...they look to me...I have an iPad and am using Google Translate which has been my saviour...so far we are concentrating on greetings and body parts...I've also shown them YouTube videos of Australia. They are all absolute beginners with no confidence and no English.

I'd appreciate any kind of suggestions, assistance, resources, anything you can suggest....

Kind regards

Kieran

Teach in Thailand with GeoVisionsWow, Kieran, you are really brave.  I think there is a lot you can do so please don't worry so much.  I am an ESL teacher in Connecticut where I also teach high school social studies and special education.  I have worked with children of every age and have taught a few years of night school.  Every age group has something to offer and I found the adults one of the most fun groups with which to work.

You will find out very early what each member of your group is capable of.  Many new speakers of English know some words but feel funny speaking.  Many can read or understand, but not speak.  You will probably find that there will be a leader, of sorts, in your group for which you can rely to translate or give you an indication of what the others are capable of or willing to do.

Since you are teaching adults, you need to assure that your lessons are high interest.  So begin by talking about the culture from which you come.  What do people do there for fun?  Where do you live?  What is the geography like?  Share pictures, magazines, photographs, postcards, etc. Show them pictures of your family and friends (if you are comfortable with this).  Show them what an 11 year old might be doing or what school is like.  Write key words on a board or piece of paper.  Use maps to find distance from Thailand to your hometown.  Take note of what countries you would travel over or through.  YOu can include other things like oceans, rivers, mountains, etc.  This will undoubtedly spark some discussion from which you can glean who your stronger English students are.   Do this kind of thing for more than one day.  You can ask them to write about what they like about Thailand or where they have traveled.  If they can't write it in English tell them to write in Thai or to draw a picture.  Trust me, this is not babyish.  Your subject matter is not juvenile, that's what makes the difference.

Next, bring in pictures and photographs of famous people and places around the world.  Ask them to name them and then write them on the board.  This also should spark some interest.  They can be pictures of current leaders of the world, pop stars, athletes, musicians, dead presidents, whatever.  Do the same with the land marks.  Then give a brief written description of each person or place.  When you are finished ask them to choose which person they would like to most meet or which place they would like to visit.  Ask them to explain why they made this choice and to write a brief explanation.  Focus on the conversational piece of it.

Text used with Conversation CorpsYou should focus on their interests even though they are different ages.  Google Translate is lovely and so is youtube.  Are you from Australia?  Why not show them pictures of your family and friends and introduce titles at the same time.  Then ask them to introduce their family and friends through titles.

You can provide a writing prompt every day.  There are many on the internet.  Make sure they each have a Thai/English dictionary.  Tell them that they can answer first in Thai and then translate it.  Writing prompts are high interest and usually involve their own opinions about something.

Find articles in the newspaper and use google translate to develop questions for you to give to them.  I think you are on the right track.  Play simple games together, like card games.  Remember every time you talk to them you are using English and displaying proper usage.  Do jigsaw puzzles together to talk about colors or landforms.  Have them create books of geographical land forms by looking for them in National Geographic or on line.  My students love this activity.  You can do it at the same time, using Thai. 

You can also focus on what they would need to know if they were to travel to an English-speaking country.  They would need to be able to ask for directions, order food, follow directions, take a bus, etc.  Ask them what they would like to know how to do and role play.

I have lots more ideas, Kieran.  Write me when you know more about the members of your group and the levels of English.  I can't wait to hear.

Betsy

If you have comments for this tutor on Conversation Corps-Spain, feel free to use the Comments section below.  This is an open community and we're all eager to learn.

Tags: Conversation Partner, Conversation Corps Thailand, Help Me Teach, Thailand

Mai-Pen-Rai! Come Teach Abroad In Thailand With GeoVisions

Posted by Randy LeGrant on Wed, Jan 04, 2012

We have this amazing program in Thailand (for degree holders or not) to Teach in Thailand.  You will earn a full time salary and have great benefits.

Or, you can join the Conversation Corps and live with a family and teach them conversational English on Conversation Corps-Thailand.

Or, you can come to a summer camp and be a camp counselor (coming soon) and during all of the activities with the kids, you'll speak English.

And maybe learn a little Thai.

And learn all about Mai-Pen-Rai.

Watch the video and contact us.  We have families along the coast waiting for you, and 150 full time teaching jobs available each month.

Enjoy the video.  It only takes 3 minutes and it's amazing!

Mai-Pen-Rai!

Tags: Conversation Partner, Teach Abroad, Conversation Corps Thailand, Conversation Corps, Thailand

If You Speak English, You Can Teach English With GeoVisions

Posted by Kevin Morgan on Mon, Jul 19, 2010

describe the imageI’m Kevin Morgan, GeoVisions CEO.  I’m travelling now through Asia ...  meeting with our English language tutors, future Work and Travel students, and leaders in education and exchange.  I’m also reading the region’s newspapers and websites.  There are so many stories I read, and conversations I have that stress the importance of people in Asia learning to speak better English … and there is a role for you.  

describe the image“If you speak English, you can teach English.”  Okay, maybe not the intricacies and nuances of dangling participles and conjugation of verbs.  You see, our tutors teach people how to speak better, by talking with them, making them more comfortable with day-to-day conversation.  We give you tools to help you coach others along, and as much support as you need, but, if you like to talk with people, and have a bit of self-confidence, you can help people learn to be better English speakers.

 

Why is this important in Asia?  Here are some things I learned in just the past week:

-       Reuter’s News Service reported that in Japan, some of the biggest retailers announced they would start testing employees for English proficiency.  Even Toyota and Nissan have announced moves to make English more common in the workplace.

-       In Beijing, where it was recently announced that English will be taught in China starting in kindergarten, the government announced plans to have every public employee to know more than 100 basic English sentences.  80% of police officers will be required to pass English tests starting in 2015.

-       In Bangkok, a survey of business people uncovered trends in English training that call for more practical and specialized language training in Thailand.  Language coaching and conversation specific to a person’s needs are becoming as important as the basics learned in formal classroom teaching.

-       In Singapore, there is a growing need for English teachers and Conversation assistants.  Why, you ask?  Don’t Singaporeans speak English already?  Yes, but thousands of mainland China students are flocking to Singapore to learn English and still be comfortable in this city/state with a rich Chinese heritage (and maybe some relatives with whom they can live!)

describe the imageAll the above reinforces the need for English speakers to come to Asia (or anywhere in the world for that matter).  On our Conversation Corps and Conversation Partner program you can come to exciting world capitals or provincial villages, spend 15-25 hours a week “talking (as a tutor/coach)” and travel and get to know people in your free time.  As Asia develops its global leadership skills, you can see what drives these economies and these people … and you’ll have a great time.

 

Do you speak English?  Think about becoming a conversation tutor!  GeoVisions offers Conversation Corps and Conversation Partner programs in over 15 countries, with more new countries like Korea, Japan and Singapore coming on board every week.

Tags: Conversation Partner, Teach Abroad, Conversation Corps Thailand, Conversation Corps, Volunteering Abroad, Conversation Corps-China

Suck My What? Conversation Corps In Thailand

Posted by Randy LeGrant on Fri, Jun 25, 2010

Traffic in BangkokSuck My Nation!  The newest addition to the GeoVisions family of volunteer Blogs.  Read Don's Blog here.

Conversation Corps member, Don Deerie, is writing an amazing Blog with the most unique photos of life in Thailand I've seen.  Don is volunteering to live with a family in Thailand, and teach them English around 15 hours each week.  In return, he's getting free room and board with the family.  At GeoVisions, we call that Conversation Corps.

How many people get to actually live with a Thai family for a month?  It is a rare opportunity, and Don is making the most of it.  Here is an entry from June 15:

Host family ready for prayersAll smiles in the ราชอาณาจักรไทย
-2nd week in Thailand
-location: Trat
-3rd day as an English tutor to 2 students
-progress: hopeful.

I'm living with my host family for a month. I have my own room (a room larger than my parents'). The family owns a motorbike shop.

Don is a student at Bates College in Maine and speaks Spanish, Dutch and is learning Czech.  He brings to the Conversation Corps a great sense of humor and tons of excitement for Thailand, his host family and teaching them some conversational English.

If you have any interest in Thailand or what it's like to live with a family in that stunning country...or if you have questions about joining the Conversation Corps, you will enjoy reading Suck My Nation.

Do you worry about not being able to teach English?  Leave us your comments below!  The Conversation Corps is about teaching conversational English.  Anyone can do it.  What are your thoughts about Don's Blog or the Corps?  Please leave them below.

Tags: Conversation Corps Thailand, Conversation Corps, Volunteer Blogs, Volunteering Abroad, Thailand