Situated in the South Pacific region and some 4 hours flight time from Melbourne, the Republic of Vanuatu is a multicultural island nation of about 400,000 people living on over 90 islands.
Participants in the Vanuatu program can be expected to be challenged not only by the beauty of living on a tropical island but also by the many issues confronting this small nation as it emerges from decades of colonial rule.
The Vanuatu Department of Education is strongly supportive of this program and individual schools will warmly welcome your involvement.
The teaching program in Vanuatu takes place usually in August on the main island of Efate and requires a high degree of cultural sensitivity
and respect for a wide range of diverse cultural practices. There
are few of the 'normal' teaching and learning resources and participants in this
program need to show initiative, flexibility, adaptability and a sense of humour
when working with local students and teachers. The benefit is that you will quickly
develop new perspectives about appropriate curriculum and pedagogies.
There are opportunities to teach in both primary and secondary schools. Most of the schools are located in the capital, Port Vila. Most secondary schools are boarding schools, so that if you choose to work at one of these schools out of town and in small villages, you will be expected to live on site and to be resilient in adapting to local village customs.
Teaching in schools in Vanuatu is a challenging experience. Students are keen to learn, they speak at least 3 languages, student-based learning is a recent strategy and class sizes are often large and the rooms are hot. Classes start at 7.30am! Most schools now have at least one computer, although the larger secondary schools will have computer rooms. It is unlikely that you will know what you will be teaching before your arrive at your school, so taking some resources about Australia is strongly advised. What you will teach will depend on negotiations with your teacher supervisor. Students love having you in their classes and they will encourage you to fully engage in their culture. The classroom language of instruction is English, but outside students and staff will speak the national language, Bislama.
Accommodation is generally in motels (with a swimming pool) in the capital, Port Vila. Outer schools provide small apartment style accommodation. Over the 3 week program there are lots of opportunities to experience the many attractions of Vanuatu, including visiting outer islands.
- Lonely Planet - Vanuatu
- Smart Traveller
- Australian High Commission