Internship in Early Childhood Education
Start Your Education Career as a Kindergarten Wizard!
How to teach kids is something that cannot be taught from a textbook. You can spend years studying educational theory and teaching methodologies, but nothing compares to actually putting it into practice and spending time with very young learners.
Our Internship Program combines the necessary rigorous training with real-life work experience to propel your career as a kindergarten/early childhood teacher to the next level. Plus you’ll get a guaranteed paid job placement at a kindergarten in one of Central Europe’s hottest teaching destinations.
Our world-class VYL (Very Young Learner) training program, created and regulated by International House World Organization, is designed to give you the theory, confidence, and practice necessary to feel competent in front of a kindergarten classroom.
You will begin the course’s online modules about two months before arriving in Poland. The online component is entirely instructor-graded and assessed. Though you’ll be working remotely, all of your work will be manually graded by our instructors, and you’ll be given feedback to improve every step of the way.
After landing in Poland, you will then complete an intensive, one week live training course. Under the guidance of our Cambridge DELTA qualified instructors, you’ll learn an entirely new set of skills for teaching English to VYLs that go far beyond an ordinary TEFL certification course.
The live course includes 2.5 hours of observed teaching practice and 8 hours of teaching observations with real VYL students, hosted at one of our partner kindergartens. This will be your chance to turn the theory you’ve learned into action, and impress our instructors (and the kids, of course!) with your newly minted teaching skills.
40 Hours of Classroom Instruction
120 Hours of Online Coursework
2.5 Hours of Observed Teaching Practice
8 Hours of Teaching Observations
Training in the Jolly Phonics Approach
Lesson Planning Practice
Ongoing Reflective Workshops
International House Accredited Certification
Request the Course Syllabus for More Information
Following the training program, you will begin working as a full time kindergarten teacher. For this program, we have partnered with some of Poland’s most reputable preschools and kindergartens to guarantee all of our interns a positive developmental work experience.
The demand for qualified native VYL teachers at Polish preschools has skyrocketed in recent years, and is continuing to grow exponentially. More and more parents are opting to send kids to English-language or bilingual preschools in order for them to get an early exposure to the English language.
Classes are generally small. At private bilingual preschools, you’ll rarely have more than 10-12 students in your classroom. Often times you’ll be working alongside a local co-teacher. You will always be working a full-time schedule, with normal daily school hours as your workday, and weekends and public school holidays as days off.
Interns will be paid a rate of between 3000 and 4500 PLN (approximately €700 – €1000) per month, depending on the school you are placed in. Most kindergartens include paid holidays and sick days into the remuneration, and many will offer guaranteed pay raises to teachers for their second semester.
In addition to your paid classroom work, you will also be completing the final online components of your training course through International House as you reflect on your work experience. Nothing beats getting paid to study!
Nobody wants to feel like they're all alone when moving to a new country. For this reason, we offer full onsite arrival assistance and orientation as an integral part of our Internship Program.
Full Onsite Arrival Assistance
1-Week Orientation to Poland
Regular Social Events
Legal Work Visa + Residence
Ongoing Support from your Community Manager
Lifelong Access to Teaching Resources and Jobs
Our VYL (Very Young Learner) training course are fully accredited by International House World Organization (IHWO); one of the world’s most reputable ESL organizations in the world. As a CELTA-equivalent qualification, you’ll be armed with the necessary qualifications to land reputable jobs teaching English to children all over the world.
International House operates a network of 150 schools and language centers in 60 countries. With an IHWO accredited certification, you’ll be fully qualified for job offers that can take you all over the world!
Check out IHWO’s website to see where your International House certification can take you!
Apply if you
Are a Native English Speaker
Or possess the same fluency as a native
Have Some Experience with Kids
Preferably with Very Young Learners (age 2-6)
Are Outgoing and Constantly Full of Energy
Working with kids requires being fun and silly; is that you?
Are Hard Working & Academically Competant
If you think this internship is a paid holiday, think again
Are Mature and Professional
You’ll be living independently in a foreign country for a year. Is this something you’re comfortable with?
Prices and dates
LAST CALL: EU Citizens + Candidates currently in Europe only
- Early Registration Now Open
*Although the Fall Internship Program concludes in February, and that’s when you’ll receive your certification, your school will expect you to continue working with them for the remainder of the academic year (until late June). Your visa and contract will be valid for one year.
**The Spring 2022 Internship Program will begin during the winter holidays in mid-January or early February and will go until the end of June. The exact dates will be released when the Ministry of Education releases the 2021-2022 academic calendar – usually in July. Meanwhile, we have opened early registration for the spring program at a discounted rate.
Do I have a choice over which city I'll be working in?
Yes and no.
While we are always happy to take individual preferences into account, we have schools all over the country that cooperate with this program. As such, we cannot guarantee that every teacher will get their first choice of cities.
Where in Poland does the internship take place?
You will fly into Warsaw for our pre-course orientation week and the in-class component of the training course, which is held at a partner school in Warsaw. Interns who opt for one of our Accommodation Packages will be housed together at a guesthouse within walking distance from the city center.
For the job placements, we work with schools all over Poland, so you may or may not end up working in Warsaw.
Will I have to interview directly with the school where I'll be teaching?
Yes. All of the schools language centers that we work with for this program like to speak directly with our interns. Many interviews are conducted remotely in the months proceeding the internship’s live component, while others are conducted in-person either during your pre-course orientation week or in the weeks following the live training course. You may also be asked to conduct a trial day at the school.
In the unlikely event that you are not offered a job, your instructor will continue to work with you to find a suitable school through our network.
If I have to interview directly with a school to be hired, how can you guarantee me a job?
Although schools will always make the final call on who they hire, the schools that we work with trust our training program to produce quality teachers. Our trainers and program directors have many years of experience in the Polish ESL job market for VYL teaching, and know how many job openings to expect each semester. We accept only a limited number of interns to match the expected job openings.
It is important to note that our job guarantee only applies to interns who meet our program requirements, pass the training program, and follow our provided guidance. This program provides an extremely high level of guidance and support in creating a professional CV, interviewing, conducting trial classes, and loads more. As such, we provide no guarantee of a job to interns who do not follow the guidance our instructors provide, or are unable to pass the training program.
How long will my contract with the school be?
All schools that we work with will expect you to commit to working with them for the entire academic year (until late June).
Though of course, there’s nothing to say you can’t stay longer than that! Many interns have stayed with their schools for many consecutive academic years, and others have gone on to work elsewhere in Poland through one of our other teaching programs.
Can I apply alongside a friend or partner?
Absolutely! We love to welcome couples and/or groups of friends to our internship. Although we cannot guarantee that couples will be placed at the same school, we do our absolute best to accommodate the natural desire for couples and groups of friends to work in the same city.
I am currently traveling/working/studying abroad! Can I join this program without having to go home first?
Absolutely! We love seeing applications from teachers who have already made the jump into life overseas. However, if you are not an EU citizen, you may not be able to get a visa before you arrive, as it is not always possible to obtain a Polish visa in a third country. Check with the Polish embassy in your current country to see if it will be possible to obtain a visa without having to return to your home country.
I already have a TEFL Certificate or another ESL qualification from somewhere else. Can I skip the training component of the internship and go straight to teaching?
To put it simply, no.
The International House course in Teaching English to Very Young Learners goes far beyond what is covered in a standard 120-Hour TEFL course, and our partner schools are expecting to have this knowledge and practice before they begin teaching. Furthermore, teaching ESL to VYLs (Very Young Learners) is a very unique skillset that is rarely covered in most TEFL courses (most TEFL courses focus on teaching teenagers/young adults).
If you already have considerable ESL teaching experience and/or a similar advanced qualification and do not feel the need to obtain an additional qualification, we recommend you check out some of our other teaching programs instead.
I do not have a Bachelor's Degree. Am I still eligible?
Yes you are. We do not require a Bachelors Degree for this program. However, as the training program is an intense, university-level course, you will be expected to prove that you are academically competent and won’t struggle with academic reading and writing.
I do not have a TEFL Certificate. Am I still eligible?
Yes! Our 160-Hour course in Teaching English to Very Young Learners goes far beyond what is covered in a standard 120-Hour TEFL course, so there is no need to also take a generic TEFL course elsewhere.
Do I have to have teaching experience?
Nope! This program is built for talented teachers who have the right personality to teach but do not yet have any teaching experience. However, some prior experience working with kids is required, preferably Very Young Learners (age 3-6). Maybe you’ve volunteered at a daycare center, been a tutor or camp counselor, or worked as an au pair.
Our trainers are excited to work with teachers who have the right personality and some basic experience, and can help you transition into being a classroom teacher for the first time.
Are there any nationality restrictions to participate in this program?
Our program is open to all nationalities. It is not your passport that’s important, but your English proficiency.
However, if you require a work visa, there are certain nationalities that are not presently eligible for this particular visa. While all English-speaking countries are eligible, there are certain non-English-speaking countries that are not eligible, as per Polish and EU regulations. If you come from a non-English-speaking country and require a work visa, please see our visas page to see if your country of citizenship is eligible for the visa before applying.
Are there any age restrictions to participate in this program?
You must be a legal adult (18+), but there is no upper age restriction. Age discrimination is illegal in the European Union, and any school advertising a preference for teachers of a certain age is breaking the law.
What are my odds of being accepted if I am not a native English speaker?
This depends on how fluently and clearly you can speak English. If your level of English is anything below perfectly fluent or if you have a clearly noticeable non-native accent, we unfortunately cannot accept you on this program. Poland, like the rest of Europe, has a very high level of English proficiency. There is no shortage of local teachers who can speak C1 or C2 English with have advanced degrees and loads of teaching experience. For us to be able to consider you, you must offer something that no Polish teacher can offer: a native comprehension of the English language.
If you can speak English with a native proficiency and a neutral accent, and can prove it in your interview, we will gladly accept you regardless of your nationality and linguistic background.
Where will I live during the training course?
We provide a simple option to book accommodation for the training course and pre-course orientation week shared with other interns through our Accommodation Packages. With these packages, you will share a hostel or guesthouse with other interns.
If you want to book accommodation independently, there are numerous options available in Warsaw. We recommend using Airbnb, Hostelworld, or Booking.com.
Where will I live for the duration of my job placement?
At the end of the training program, our support staff will work with you to find suitable accommodation near your school. In many cases, your school director will be able to recommend places based off where their teachers in the past have lived.
We highly recommend sharing an apartment to cut down on costs. Many interns make friends with others on the program and split an apartment together, while others find shared apartments with local students or other young working professionals. No matter what, our staff is here to help you find a good deal.
What certification will I receive at the end of the training program?
Upon completing our training program, all interns will receive an International House Certificate in Teaching Very Young Learners, known as the IHVYL certificate. For more about the IHVYL certificate, please see International House’s website.
Can this certification be used for job applications and visa applications outside of Poland?
The International House Certification in Very Young Learners (IHVYL) is fully accredited and widely recognized around the world as CELTA-equivalent certification for teaching English to Very Young Learners. It is among the most reputable qualifications you can have if you’re applying to kindergarten ESL positions around the world.
With the IHVYl certificate, you’ll also be qualified to teach at any of International House’s affiliated language centers in 60 countries.
How will I get to work and get around?
Just like the locals, of course! Navigating Polish cities is very easy, as all have well developed and reliable public transportation systems, with buses, trams, and in the case of Warsaw, a metro. Cities offer transit passes for around €20-30 per month depending on the city.
Some Wizards who choose to live near their school are lucky enough to be able to walk to work.
Will it be hard to have a social life in Poland?
Not at all! Not only do all interns on the program quickly bond with each other during the pre-course orientation week, but you will also quickly get to meet the other Wizards working in your city through our Facebook group and regular social events.
All cities in Poland where we have Wizards working in are very cosmopolitan and have vibrant expat scenes. These communities of fellow foreigners are usually very friendly, with Facebook groups and regular meetups to welcome newcomers to the city. The Polish people are also very friendly and welcoming to foreigners, just make a few trips to a social bar or cafe and you’ll see for yourself! The level of English spoken by Poles is very high, so the language barrier is rarely a problem when meeting locals. In many cities, Community Managers also organize language exchanges and other social events, which are a perfect opportunity to mingle with locals, expats, and fellow Wizards.
How much will I get paid?
This varies slightly from job to job, but the typical salary for an entry-level teacher at a preschool in Poland is between 3000 and 4500 PLN per month (about €700 to €1000. Typically, this will include paid holidays and sick days.
How does payroll and taxes work?
English Wizards operates an extremely efficient system to manage payroll for all of our teachers and partner schools.
At the end of the month, you’ll log your hours into our system so that we can bill the school and process your payroll. Payment is made on the 15th of each following month via bank transfer. Taxes are automatically withheld from your pay. All pay rates mentioned on this page, and quoted by schools participating in this program are “netto” (after tax). This means that every single zloty is yours to keep.
Most preschools and kindergartens pay a flat monthly rate, as opposed to an hourly rate per lesson which language centers offer. This will usually include provisions to cover holidays and the occasional sick day.
What kind of support will I receive before departing to Europe?
What kind of support will I receive while I am in Poland?
You will also receive ongoing support in the classroom from both your host school and your instructor. This includes monthly training sessions with your fellow interns and our instructors. For everything outside of the classroom, you’ll have a dedicated Community Manager whom you can reach out to for support at any point of the year.
What kind of hours will I be teaching?
Kindergarten and preschool Wizards will typically work standard school hours, Monday to Friday, morning to early afternoon. You can expect a workload of approximately 30-40 hours per week of work.
I would like to stay longer than one academic year. Is this possible?
In most cases, yes.
While the Internship Program and guaranteed placement only lasts until the end of the academic year, if your performance has been top-notch and you would like to stay for another academic year, the vast majority of schools will be happy to let you return. Alternatively, many interns who choose to stay in Poland longer will transition to the Freelance Program for their second academic year.
There are no additional program fees to stay an extra year (or longer!), and extending your legal residence in Poland can be done from within the country.
I hate my job! Can I quit and find another?
Will I get holidays?
Yes, the Poles love holidays! Most schools will typically have 1-2 weeks off around Christmas time, as well as 2-3 weeks off in February as fall semester ends and spring semester begins. There are also usually 1-2 weeks off in April around Easter.
Most preschools and kindergartens offer paid holidays as part of the remuneration, though that is not guaranteed, so check with your school before assuming you’re getting paid when you aren’t working!