English Teaching Volunteering Projects in Jamaica
- Placement locations: Mandeville
- Types of schools: Primary, Secondary, Adult Literacy Programme
- Age of students: 6 - 18, adults
- Class sizes: 30 - 40
- Role: Teacher or teaching assistant (English, French, Spanish, Geography, History, Maths, Sports)
- Extra-curricular roles: Art, Dance, Drama, Dutch, German, IT, Music
- Accommodation: Host families
- Price: From
- What’s included? Food, accommodation, transfers to and from our specified airport, transport to and from work where required, insurance, personal webpage, induction and orientation, 24/7 support
- What’s not included? Flights, visa costs, spending money
- Length of placement: From 3 weeks
- Start dates: Flexible
No Prior Teaching Experience Required
As a volunteer on one of our Teaching projects in Jamaica you will have the opportunity to significantly contribute to the welfare of the country’s education system. You will also gain an amazing new perspective on this incredible place. You can get invaluable work experience without any previous qualifications and you are not required to have undergone TEFL training. Whether you are coming to volunteer during your gap year, career break or an extended holiday, you will have a role to play in one of the schools that we work with.
Some Background on Jamaica
Jamaica is a country of extremes, with wealthy Jamaicans enjoying a modern, western lifestyle, frequenting shopping malls and exclusive golf clubs, whilst the poorest people in society, some 16% of Jamaicans, live below the poverty line. The wealth distribution reflects Jamaica's slave-plantation heritage and the descendants of black slaves tend to be among the poorest classes in Jamaica. Yet it was the end of slavery that heralded the start of education for all and the government is currently investing in improving and modernising the education system throughout the country.
Projects Abroad Jamaica is based in the university town of Mandeville. Although Jamaica's official language is English, many children grow up speaking Jamaican Creole (patois) at home. Jamaican Standard English (a mix of American and British English) is taught in schools and is key to getting a sought-after job in business or within the tourist industry.
Teaching Placements in Jamaica
Volunteer teachers work alongside the Jamaican staff to help improve English pronunciation via interactive and fun lessons aimed at boosting the students’ confidence. They are sure to be interested in your life and you can use this to get them talking to you and each other.
In most schools you will begin as a classroom assistant, supporting the teachers in their lessons. However, as you get to know the children better and start to grow in confidence you may want to take on more responsibility.
The impact you have on the lives of your students will be long lasting. In addition, you will also be part of a much larger volunteer network, which is making a really positive contribution to the wider community.
Participate in Teaching Workshops
Our Teaching volunteers receive regular workshops led by the Teaching Project Officer in Jamaica. The workshops provide tools and tips on how to better organise your lessons and educational methods at your school placement. They also give information on key issues relating to the placement, problem solving ideas and offer an opportunity to receive and give feedback.
Teach Other Subjects and Extracurricular Activities
You also have the chance to teach other subjects if you would like to. You can teach dance, drama, mathematics, art, sport, history, geography, social studies, French or Spanish, as well as assisting in teaching German or Dutch as an extracurricular activity in the afternoons. If you are a strong French speaker it is even possible to teach French as a full-time placement.
Whatever your skills or interests, as a volunteer in Jamaica you will make an important contribution by instilling in your students the confidence that comes from being able to communicate more easily. You will also help to increase cultural awareness, which is one of the main aims of the government's current educational campaign.
Assist with the Community Literacy Project
Volunteers can also choose to help on a Community Literacy Project which offers adult literacy education programmes. Volunteers work with individuals and small groups of no more than 10 to 15 adults in an assigned community. Community based literacy programmes and one-on-one interactions are known to improve literacy levels and it is with this in mind that the Community Literacy Project is being promoted. Volunteers are provided with appropriate training and materials.
Volunteer at a Centre for Deaf Children
We also have a Teaching placement in a centre for deaf children aged from 4 to 20 years old. This placement is ideal for anyone who knows American Sign Language. Volunteers work as assistant teachers or substitute teachers, teaching maths and English. There is also the option to teach crafts, sports, and agriculture.
Teach Music in Jamaica
You can also join a Music Teaching project in Jamaica, where you will teach music to children, teenagers and possibly adults.
If you have qualifications or experience in this field then we can make use of your skills. Read more about the opportunities for skilled volunteers in Jamaica.
You can read more detailed information about the aims of the project in our Jamaica Teaching Management Plan.
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