Teach at Monkey Tree Hong Kong Reviews
Below are feedback shared by current and past Monkey Tree teachers about their experiences working to teach at Monkey Tree Hong Kong.
Posting my feedback on other review sites to offer an alternative view points to the negative reviews seems to be banned by the moderators, so hopefully I can get my message across here.
I worked as a teacher, then was promoted to Head Teacher from 2013-2015. I really enjoyed dedicating my energy and effort to teach at Monkey Tree, getting to know the students well, and seeing them develop. In my observation, Hong Kong students are quite unique in that they don’t tend to speak much English outside of class, but they are regularly exposed to it in their daily lives, meaning that their ears are tuned to English, even if they aren’t fluent speakers yet.
A typical week as a teacher is 5 days/week with a maximum of 30 teaching hours. This leaves a couple hours per day of ‘break/admin’ time, and a 1.5 hour lunch. All sorts of foods are available all over the city, and can be very cheap, so the 1.5 hour lunch is great to go explore different cuisines and restaurants. The kids that I taught were generally between the ages of 3-7 years-old. I know some of the reviews say that lesson are inflexible, but I beg to differ. I used to take different instruments into class, props, music, etc, to teach through experience. That’s not in the lesson plans. No one ever told me not to be creative. Classes were generally between 2-6 kids, depending on the type of class.
I personally really love Hong Kong. It’s a small city in terms of geographic coverage, but it’s super busy and caters to basically every walk of life. As mentioned, there are tons of restaurants on every street, many of which are open until super late (midnight or later), and since there’s so many expats everywhere, you can get any sort of food basically anywhere. Transportation is super convenient. The MTR (subway train) is fast, covers most of the city, cheap, and is extremely reliable. The trains run every 1-2 minutes, so missing one was literally never an issue.
Another thing that may be important to know is that the city is extremely safe. I have never even heard of someone being robbed or mugged or have a single aggressive altercation. Since the city runs 24/7, you can walk anywhere at any time and feel safe. There’s so many people around that you are almost literally always surrounded by tons of strangers, which means you’re never alone.
One other thing that’s really great about HK is how close it is to so many places in Asia, many of which are accessible by very cheap flights (~US$80-100/HK$600-800/ ZAR1200-1600). If traveling to new places is your gig, then planning time to make short trips is definitely worth it.
For me, being able to teach at Monkey Tree was rewarding and honestly wasn’t what I would consider stressful or difficult. It was generally a high-energy, fast-paced working day that turned into a fun social life outside of work. The Monkey Tree community is actually quite huge in HK, so making friends is easy and there’s always someone around to show you around and hang out with.
I had a great year dedicating my time and effort to teach for Monkey Tree. With their housing option, moving to Hong Kong was a very smooth, cost-effective transition.
It was a job that I found very rewarding and just challenging enough for my first teaching job. The syllabus was very structured and easy to follow, so minimal preparation was needed from me. However the drawback of this was that I had quite a large amount of teaching hours.
The classes were all really small, though, which gave me the chance to build real relationships with my students. I became invested in their progress and took their achievements as a personal success too. That’s why I found the job so rewarding. It was also fantastic to spend a year in Hong Kong — it is truly an incredible city with so much to offer, and while living there is an easy adjustment for a Westerner, it also offers the chance to truly experience a completely different culture from your own.
Being able to teach at Monkey Tree gave me the opportunity to make the most of Hong Kong. My salary also allowed me travel throughout Asia during my contract and also to save up enough to comfortably go on a month long trip at the end of it.
It is something that I would really recommend to recent graduates who want to travel and to try something different before settling into their career, be in teaching or otherwise — the international experience is a great thing to add to your CV!
“For me, it was two years, three thousand or so classes, a promotion and friends made for life. It was an experience I look on with the utmost fondness and one I would repeat again if I could.
From the moment I was offered a contract from Ricky Sung I made the bold choice not to Google the company. We live in the information age and more often than not, that information is negative. My idea was that whatever happened, I had enough money to get on a plane back to the UK and so why not take the risk. As it turns out, that decision was certainly the right one.
Teachers are given a lot of support at Monkey Tree. Every Centre has a Head Teacher (an experienced teacher who is in charge of day to day operations and teacher performance) and a Manager who deals with the Chinese language and business side of things. From Head Office, each Centre has a Centre Liaison, a person who acts as a direct link from the Centre to Head Office.”
Sourced from lamurphy.com