Teach in Japan

Teach in Japan

Japan is one of the most popular options for new graduates and certified teachers looking to teach English abroad, as English teachers continue to be in high demand across the country. English teaching jobs in Japan within public and private schools offer ESL teachers the opportunity to experience a unique culture and tradition in one of the most technologically advanced countries in the world.

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Options for teaching in Japan

For those looking to teach English in Japan, there are two main options available: ALT (Assistant Language Teacher) teaching jobs within the Japanese public school system, or teaching jobs at private language institutes (also known as English conversation schools or Eikaiwas).

Public school English teaching jobs in Japan

The Japan Exchange and Teaching Programme, known as the JET program, is an exchange teaching program, managed by the Japanese government, that brings recent college graduates from over 40 countries to Japan to work as ALTs. ALT English teaching jobs are available in public elementary and junior high schools throughout Japan. While your role will vary from school to school, ALTs typically work alongside a Japanese teacher of English (JTE). Classroom size ranges from 35 - 40 students. You will be expected to work around eight hours and teach four lessons a day. Contracts for English teaching jobs in Japan in the public school system usually start in April and September and run until late March of the following year.

Why not read these teacher stories about what it’s like to live and teach English in Japan:

Learn more about public school jobs in Japan

Options for teaching in Japan

Private school English teaching jobs in Japan

English teaching jobs in Japan are also widely available at private language institutes throughout the country. Students range from kindergarten to adults and working shifts range from day to evening shifts. In-depth teacher training and support is offered before and during your contract. Performance incentives make teaching English at private schools in Japan exciting, motivating and fun. English teaching positions are available throughout the year, but the application process can be lengthy, so plan in advance.

Learn more about private school jobs in Japan

Private school English teaching jobs in Japan

Teach English online to Japanese students

Are you looking for a convenient, part-time teaching job you can do from home?

Your guide to teaching English in Japan for the summer

Demand for online English education is exploding among students based in Japan. As a result, several English teaching companies catering specifically to Japanese English language learners are seeking native English speaking applicants to fill a large number of online English teaching vacancies.

If you have the necessary skills and experience (such as a bachelor’s degree and a TEFL certificate), now’s the perfect time to apply to teach English online!

If you don’t have a degree, then this is the just the blog for you: Can I get a job teaching in Japan if I don’t have a college degree?

Apply to teach English online to Japanese students today >

Teach English to Japanese students online
teaching english abroad salary comparison

Salary and benefits when teaching English in Japan

Basic Benefits Public School ALT Jobs in Japan Private School Jobs in Japan
Monthly Salary ¥250,000 (approx. $2,200 USD) ¥250,000 - ¥300,000 (approx. $2,200 - $2,625 USD) for full-time English teaching positions
¥125,000 (approx. $1,500 USD) for part-time English teaching positions
Working Hours 08:00 - 17:00 Monday - Friday 5 days/week Monday - Saturday
Hours vary and are agreed upon by the teacher and the school.
**Must be flexible
Teaching Hours 29.5 hrs/week 26.6 hrs/week full-time
13.3 hrs/week part-time
Vacation 3 - 4 weeks in August (60% paid)
2 weeks in December/January (75% paid)
All National Holidays and Bonus Personal Days
All National Holidays
10 working days (full-time)
Number of holidays varies for part-time contracts
Foreign Teachers 1 (only 1 foreign teacher/school) 2-15 teachers/school
Class Size 35 - 40 students/class 1-15 students/class
Varies depending on location: ¥15,000 - ¥80,000/month
Average: ¥50,000/month for a shared apartment
Teacher pays for key money
¥40,000 - 90,000/month (approx.)
School can act as guarantor
Assistance in finding accommodations provided
Airfare Teacher pays for flight and is reimbursed by school on arrival
Japanese immigration requires proof of return flight booking
Teach Away can assist teachers with finding an affordable flight
Teacher pays for flight and is reimbursed by school on arrival
Japanese immigration requires proof of return flight booking
Teach Away can assist teachers with finding an affordable flight
Bonuses Free Japanese online lessons
Location preferences honored whenever possible
Health insurance provided
Contract completion bonus
Locations Towns & Rural Areas
(easier to find a job teaching English in rural areas)
Tokyo (90%)
Towns and Rural Areas (10%)
Start Dates March/April

Japan teaching salary calculator

Want to know how much money you can make teaching in Japan? Use our Teach Abroad Salary Calculator to find out!

Teach in Japan - Hiring

English teaching jobs in Japan open regularly, with start dates throughout the year. Check the Teach Away job board for current English teaching opportunities in Japan.

Qualifications to teach in Japan

To qualify for most English teaching jobs in Japan, you will need, at minimum, a Bachelor’s degree and native English language proficiency.

TEFL certification for English teaching jobs in Japan

Many private language institutes in Japan require applicants to possess a TEFL certificate. The University of Toronto’s TEFL Online Certificate can help you become a leading candidate for some of the top private English teaching jobs in Japan.

esl teacher japan hiring

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Visas for English teachers in Japan

The type of visa you need to apply for to teach English in Japan will depend on the type of school you want to work in. There are two different categories of work visas for English teachers in Japan:
Instructor Visa -This allows English teachers to work in the Japanese public school system.
Specialist in Humanities Visa -This allows English teachers to work in private language institutes across Japan.

Things for teachers to do in Japan

Whether you are interested in Japanese art, cinema, anime, language, culture, taiko drumming, zen temples, or Harajuku madness, Japan will have something for you. For outdoor enthusiasts, Japan offers endless opportunities for sports including surfing, skiing, hiking, and biking. Expect to be taken aback by busy subway stations, surprised as you are welcomed by the elegant formality of Japanese manners - and awestruck by the enchanting atmosphere of Japanese castles!

english teacher japan visa

Japan at a Glance

Country Information

Capital - Tokyo

Language - Japanese

Population - 127,799,000 (10th)

Currency - Yen (¥) / En (円 or 圓) (JPY)

Government - Unitary parliamentary democracy and constitutional monarchy

Major Religion - Buddhism, Shinto

Climate - Temperate

Quick Facts
  • More than 70% of Japan consists of mountains, including more than 200 volcanoes.
  • Mt. Fuji, the tallest mountain in Japan, is an active volcano.
  • A nice musk melon, similar to a cantaloupe, may sell for over $300US.
  • There are four different writing systems in Japan, romaji, katakana, hiragana, and kanji.
  • Japan’s literacy rate is almost 100%.
  • There are around 1,500 earthquakes every year in Japan.
  • The first novel, The Tale of Genji, was written in 1007 by a Japanese noble woman, Murasaki Shikibu.

Apply to Teach in Japan

Teaching jobs in Japan open regularly, with start dates throughout the year. Apply through Teach Away to teach in Japan.