I'm a 22 year old with 4 semesters left of college Longwood University in Virginia I'm majoring in Liberal Studies/Elementary Education and be certified K-5. I want to teach elementary school because kids are awesome ! I'm involved with Inter-varsity on my campus and for like the past year I've been thinking about what do i do after college and what god has planned for me and I feel he wants me to do something overseas with teachers in 3rd world countries and was wondering what sort of missions are out there in the education field? Ive been on short mission trips before but want to see whats out there career wise while trying to answer god's call.
Thank you, Gino, for your sensitivity to God’s call and for your love for children!
Although I am not an expert in the field, initial searches have shown me that there is not a major demand for elementary education teachers overseas to teach national children. Most countries have at least opportunities for elementary education and have their own teachers who know the language and the culture.
One option would be to consider teaching in a Christian missionary children’s school, where there is demand. This would give you an opportunity to grow in your capacity as a teacher, gaining valuable experience in your own language, while enabling you to look around and see possible needs in national schools. After a few years, you could do some graduate study in an area that interests you, and you would find your service would be more valuable. You would have opportunity to make contacts, talk to people, and learn more about your own interests and abilities.
In the meantime, the Lord could show you areas where you could serve the Lord in this context, which would mean application to a mission agency, language study, training in Bible and Theology, etc.
Another possibility would be to work in an orphanage, where your sensitivity to children and skills in communication would be much appreciated. However, this would involve language training and undoubtedly Biblical and theological training.
Here are a couple of Search Engines that might be of help to you if you desire to follow up on these suggestions:
- For orphanages: www.missionfinder.org/
- For missionary childrens’ schools - start your search by going to the ACSI (Association of Christian Schools, International) website, then clicking into the International page (http://www.acsi.org/web2003/default.aspx?ID=1980. You will find lists of information about different schools.
Meanwhile, continue putting your life before the Lord and ask Him to open some doors for you. If your church has a missionary conference, talk to missionaries about your interest and see what they say. Read mission magazines and ask the Lord to help you be sensitive to leads. Continue your involvement in InterVarsity and learn all you can about leading Bible Studies, sharing the Gospel, praying for people, etc. This experience and training is vital preparation for ministry overseas! By all means, go to Urbana 2012!
Sooner or later I’m sure you’ll find the Lord guiding you. Remember, He is more interested in your finding His will than you are!
Blessings on you, Gino.