This is an exciting time to serve as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Myanmar. The country is going through a historic transition with major societal reforms, particularly in the field of education. The Ministry of Education places a strong emphasis on improving English language teaching and learning. This is seen not only as a means for young people to access educational and professional opportunities but also as a way to access and connect with the outside world. We therefore are privileged to partner with the Ministry of Education to strengthen the capacity of English language teachers and provide student-centered classroom instruction. Our Volunteers take on the respected role of teacher in public middle and high schools throughout Myanmar with a focus on the following three areas of work:
Volunteers work side by side with local English teachers to co-plan and co-teach middle and high school English language classes. This model of co-teaching is an opportunity for the Volunteers and local teachers to learn from one another while ensuring the sustainability of the Volunteers’ work for years to come. Moreover, as many local teachers have had very limited experience in communicating in English, Volunteers also support local teachers to improve their English language skills through teacher-focused English communication classes and conversation partner study.
Teacher Trainer Volunteers will have similar responsibilities as their fellow classroom-teaching Volunteers but their service will have a stronger focus on teacher-training activities such as co-facilitating teacher workshops or providing mentorship or coaching to teachers and fellow Volunteers.
Volunteers co-teach English classes with local teachers in middle schools and high schools. A typical classroom size is 40-80 students. Myanmar students are generally quite studious and well-behaved although the large classroom sizes and antiquated examination system can be a challenge for even the most experienced of teachers. Volunteers also have the opportunity to teach English-communication classes to a smaller number of students outside their core-teaching schedule. Moreover, Volunteers are expected to organize extracurricular and recreational activities that create opportunities for students to practice and improve their language skills (e.g. essay competitions, debate, pen-pal exchanges, impromptu speeches, etc.).
Outside of their primary assignment in schools, Volunteers are expected to engage their community in activities that not only help to promote English language education (e.g. English clubs, community English classes) but also to help develop and empower communities. Examples of such activities may include, but are not limited to, renovating a school or community library, building a neighborhood recycling program, or starting a youth soccer club.
Peace Corps Volunteers in Myanmar will have a unique opportunity to be a pioneer one of the newest Peace Corps programs. Such opportunities are rare indeed and require the best each of us has to offer.
Health coverage, Housing, Living allowance, Non-competitive eligibility (federal jobs), Stipend, Student loan forbearance, Training
Prohibits paid work outside of the sponsoring agency at any time
Subject to criminal background check