Volunteer Teachers

Native English speakers who are 19 years and older are welcome apply for our volunteer program. This program doesn’t require a degree. Applicants pay a low one time fee which covers their flights, visas, housing, utilities, and food for the duration of their semester.

Teachers typically teach around 20 hours a week with a two-day weekend (usually including Sunday). Positions are available in K-12 schools and occasionally colleges and universities.

Teachers can request to be placed with at least one other China Horizons teacher who is also applying. We can sometimes accommodate a group of 4-5 acquaintances in the same school/city.

Click HERE to find out how to apply for a volunteer position.

Paid Teachers

If qualified, applicants may apply for our paid teaching program (as opposed to the volunteer program).
Paid positions are only open to applicants possessing a BA/BS degree and 2 years of work experience post graduation. Paid positions also require a commitment to teach for one full academic year (September-July). If you do not have a degree, our volunteer program is available to all native English speaking applicants.

A TESOL certification course will be taken upon your arrival in China. This course will last approximately five days. This is mandatory for all teachers with less than two years of experience since receiving their degrees.
Paid teachers typically teach around 20 hours a week with a two-day weekend (usually including Sundays). Positions are available in K-12 schools as well as colleges and universities.

Paid teachers staying for a one-year contract report earning more than $7,750 after deducting their upfront costs.

Click HERE to find out how to apply for a paid position.

Mentor Teachers

You’ll still be teaching just like last time. In addition to teaching at your school, you’ll be mentoring a new group of China Horizons teachers. Mentor groups usually consist of 8-10 new CH teachers. In this mentor capacity, you’ll be able to offer them your first-hand knowledge of China as someone who’s been there and experienced it.

Mentors will have the chance to help new teachers get on their feet faster in China and start loving China starting weeks before the semester begins. As you lead by example, you’ll be able to help your mentees adjust to and then love their time in China. The majority of your extra duties as a mentor will be answering a lot of basic questions; questions that you yourself probably had when you were first going to China and didn’t know what to expect.

At this time the Mentorship Program will only be offered during the Fall and Spring semesters. Will every past teacher be accepted as a CH Mentor? Not necessarily. Your eligibility will depend much on your first semester in China. But we anticipate the majority of our past teachers will qualify for this new position!


China Horizons will make and purchase all airfare reservations for the group. Volunteer teachers are asked to choose one of the preselected departure cities. The cost of the airfare from one of these cities is included in the volunteer program fee. Participants desiring to depart from another location may need to pay an additional fee if there is an increase in the ticket cost compared to the ticket of the preselected cities.

The preselected cities are: Salt Lake City, Denver, Las Vegas, Phoenix, Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and San Diego.


Since we work with both public and private schools, your school could be a boarding school where the children live and eat on the school campus; a school where students travel home on weekends; or a public school where the students come and go every day. Private schools often have more resources and are able to provide a step-up in apartments. However, both public and private schools offer very reasonable and sanitary living conditions.


The school is responsible for providing a free, clean, furnished, climate-controlled (meaning heat and AC, which is not common in China) apartment. However, be aware that Chinese heating and AC sources may not be as efficient as you are accustomed to. Though the apartment is heated, it may still be ‘cool’ in your standards. Remember that you are living in a developing country. Please be considerate and do not waste water or electricity, especially when the school is covering the costs.
The layout style of each apartment differs regarding the number of bedrooms and whether or not a kitchen is provided. All apartments are contracted to have a private bathroom and shower with a western-style toilet. However, there are a few schools that are still ‘modernizing’ which have ‘squatter’ toilets. Most furnishings include a TV, VCD/DVD player, telephone, bed with coverings, wardrobe cabinet, desk, chair/couch, refrigerator, computer with internet access, and a washing machine. China Horizons, however, cannot guarantee each of these amenities. All of the rooms are private with a lock and key issued to the foreign teacher.


As for eating, if you are participating as a VOLUNTEER or MENTOR then you will receive a meal card or cash stipend to use each month at the school cafeteria or to cook at home.

For the PAID teachers some schools offer free meals at the cafeteria on campus, while others expect teachers to pay for their own meals out of their monthly living allowance/salary. Schools without cafeterias and the means to feed teachers will provide a kitchen in the apartment for the teacher to cook independently.

For ALL programs if the school provides a kitchen with the apartment and a teacher would rather cook independently than eat at the cafeteria for free, then the teacher is responsible for all grocery costs. Be aware that the cafeteria food is Chinese food and varies vastly from western tastes. Sometimes it takes several weeks to become accustomed to this change of diet.

Much of the Chinese diet consists of noodles, rice, steamed/deep fried meat and vegetables, fish, chicken, pork, and beef. Most teachers LOVE the food and miss it. You will most likely be asked to try something very ‘foreign.’ What you eat is up to you. Just be polite about it.