While teaching English in Korea, I met a friend who was born in Italy. After listening to him talk about his native country, and show me some pictures of his hometown, I thought to myself...
I should teach English in Italy on my way home from Korea.
That’s when I found GeoVisions. (I did some research and discovered Italy is a lot more gluten allergy aware than many other places, so I decided to give it a try.) I am so glad I did!
My time here has flown by. I spent the first few weeks getting used to the time difference and getting to know my family. I couldn’t have found a better host family! They are wonderful and I am positive I’ll see them again.
Besides getting to know them, I also figured out the public transportation, made some friends, and explored different parts of the city.
On a typical day, I’d have the morning to study Italian, catch up on personal stuff, tutor some other friends, or explore. In the afternoon, I’d have lessons and then dinner with the family and some relaxing. I’m not much of a nightlife person so I stayed in most evenings during the weekday. On the weekend, I usually left Milan to adventure or relax with a friend.
I didn’t see too much of Italy because of my budget, but I did make my way to Genova, Nervi, Cinque Terre, Levanto, Firenze, and the lake area north of Milan. Several trips were with my host family. I rarely traveled on my own because I almost always met up with someone at the end of my train ride.
Seeing different parts of Italy was nice, though. I highly recommend not traveling to Cinque Terre on a holiday weekend. Firenze will be packed just about any time of the year, so if you want to see museums, buy a pass ahead of time or you will waste time you don’t have standing in lines. Instead of seeing museums, I explored the city and ate like a queen!
If I had any advice to give someone thinking of teaching English in Italy, I’d say a lot can depend on your host family and their schedule. Make sure everyone has clear expectations and know your role. I had a great time, and I even got to teach in one of the children’s elementary school classes as a guest teacher.
I loved my experience of teaching English in Italy and wouldn’t trade it for anything.
I even got to go to EXPO as a bonus for being in Milan during the right season. I’ve eaten some amazing food (senza glutine) and now I can say Italian food is my favorite! The catch is I only like Italian food in Italy. Three months now seems a little short (for both me and my host family), but I am going to continue to study Italian and return as soon as I can.
-- Jena Robinson