The Teach in a Homestay program offers the opportunity for participants to become an English tutor for a local family while sharing their everyday life
Explore the countless heritage and cultural landmarks in Beijing while you tutor and live with a local host family on Greenheart Travel’s Teach English in a Homestay program in China. Participants spend 10-15 hours per week tutoring the host family English to improve their language skills and have options to work at a private institute.
This program offers:
This is a volunteer teaching placement designed for deep cultural immersion and exchange. This program is ideal for adults hoping to get their feet wet in teaching, teachers planning to travel during their summer break, or travelers seeking to experience full cultural immersion while teaching English abroad.
What do our alumni say about this program?
“My homestay experience in China was the experience of a lifetime. Although my stay was only for a month, it offered me actual first-hand experience and a wonderful glimpse into the lives of Beijingers. I was able to delve into Chinese culture, customs, and cuisine! My tutoring hours were very reasonable and I was able to explore an array of tourist attractions on my own time. I encourage you to plan ahead, pack your bags, and just go! You will not regret this experience of a lifetime.” — Afia Yeboah, China Teach in a Homestay Alum
Start dates are available year round, usually the first Sunday of every month*. However, we can be flexible, so if you are unable to start on those dates, please contact Greenheart Travel directly to see what we can do.
*Due to national holidays, start dates in October, December and February will be the second or third Sunday of every month.
Deadline to submit application
You should finish your application a minimum of 3 months prior to your start date to secure a host family and have time to apply for your visa.
We are looking for participants who are open-minded and flexible, as well as meet the following requirements:
No previous teaching experience or certification is required, but we highly encourage applicants to have a strong interest in tutoring. Usually you will teach the children in the home but occasionally an adult will request lessons as well. The level of English will vary depending on the host family but most will be at the beginner level and will only have basic knowledge of English.
All accepted applicants will complete a secondary interview and mock tutoring session. The results of this will determine your schedule while in the country. For example, teachers who receive higher scores will:
If you don’t have prior teaching experience, don’t worry! You are still eligible for the program and will tutor 5 hours a week and assist at the in-country partner office for the remaining 10 hours. Greenheart Travel will provide you access to a library of resources to help you develop ideas for the lessons. In this situation, typically families are looking for you to speak English with them over dinner or for a certain amount of time during the day.
Please note, all prices are listed in USD
What’s Not Included:
*The Mandarin course can be extended for an additional month for $350 USD
Wondering why you have to pay for a volunteer teaching program?
Greenheart Travel is a non-profit organization, and the program fee for this volunteer teaching project covers the cost of placing you in the program. These fees also aid in providing accommodation, meals, insurance and pre-departure & in-country support to homestay teachers.
Homestay participants live with a local host family during the program. Host families apply in a similar way to participants and Greenheart Travel will match you based on living preferences and personal interests.
Prospective host families undergo a rigorous screening process. Participants can rest assured that only suitable host families will be selected. In order to qualify as a host family, the prospective hosts must:
Participants will have their own private room but may share a bathroom and living areas with the host family. Host families also provide three meals per day except on when going out to restaurants. As an English teacher in a homestay, you will be warmly welcomed into a host family’s home, while having the opportunity to explore the region on your own.
Homestay participants live with a local host family during the program. It’s important to be flexible in your placement location, as there are families throughout the country. Although we cannot guarantee placement in a specific region or city, participants are likely to be placed in the Beijing area (Shenzhen area only upon request). We will ask about your preferences during the Skype interview, and you can see a map of where in Beijing we have placed teachers in the past.
Can I choose where I will be placed?
No. You can choose your destination country, but you must be flexible about where you will be placed within that country. We can never guarantee placements in any specific city or region and we match based on compatibility with the host family.
Once I receive my placement, can I request to change it?
No, we do not change host families based on preferences or location. If you request to change your host family after you have been placed, you will forfeit your $300 committment deposit.
What if I don’t like my host family? Can I request a new one?
No. We do not change host families based on preferences or location. If concerns arise one you are in country, we handle them on a case-by-case basis and do our best to resolve issues amicably.
Can I be placed with my friend/spouse/significant other?
No. We are not able to place more than one person with a host family. It is okay to apply with friends and family; however, you will be placed in separate homes and we cannot guarantee they will be in the same city
While no certification is required for the Teach English in a Homestay program, an education in ESL teaching methods is extremely helpful in these tutoring positions.
Therefore, we are excited to offer a special discount on the Online TEFL Certification Course. This will allow our Homestay teachers to get formal ESL training alongside the hands on experience of tutoring their host families. Alumni of the online course receive lifetime job placement assistance, opening up great opportunities for future teaching positions around the world.
Adding the 170-hour online course is perfect if you want:
Teach English in a Homestay travelers can sign up for the TEFL course in their homestay application at a discounted fee of $1,045. Just check the “Add TEFL Certification” box when you apply!
Read more about the course here!
1. Start Your Application Here: Greenheart Travel Application. This first step includes things like your name, address and chosen start date and should take around 10-15 minutes to complete. Once complete, you will receive a link to a digital Terms and Conditions form.
2. Sign the Terms & Conditions (Approximately 10 Minutes): These are our basic policies like cancellation policies, deferral policies, etc.
3. Submit your deposit (Approximately 5 minutes): A $300 deposit is required in order to apply for the program. This is subtracted from your total program fee. If we are unable to accept you following your interview (very unlikely!) we will refund your deposit in full.
4. Secondary Application Form (Approximately 30 Minutes): Provide more detailed information about yourself in Part 2 of the application. Links to this part will be emailed to you. In this section, you’ll tell us more information like your work history, motivations for joining the program, travel history, and emergency contacts.
5. Submitting Your Documents: Submit your required documents (below) at the link provided.
6. Skype Interview (Approximately 10-15 Minutes): Once you have submitted your online application and paid your application deposit, you will be asked to schedule a video interview with a Greenheart Travel representative.
7. You’re accepted! Woohoo! We are usually able to accept people within a 1-2 weeks of their interviews.
8. Commitment Deposit: Once you are accepted to the program, you will need to submit a $300 commitment deposit within 14 days to confirm your spot on the program.
9. Book your flights, and get ready for your adventure to China!
Your program manager will be in touch with you directly about your acceptance. If accepted, you will receive your Greenheart Travel program handbook via email, as well as supplemental information about dealing with culture shock and our insurance program.
Before we begin the host family screening and placement process, an additional $300 commitment deposit (which goes toward your program fee also) is due.
A visa may be required for a tourist stay of up to 90 days depending on the destination country. Greenheart Travel will provide you information about applying for a visa, but please check with the embassy of your host country to verify, as visa requirements may change.
Have questions or want to talk to us about the program? Set up a time to have a phone call below.