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ILP's (Not-So-Secret) Secret Revealed!

Posted by Lindsay Hall on 3/22/15 9:37 AM

ILP China

There is one perk about volunteering with ILP that not many people know until they have already served abroad with our program — here's our not-so-secret ... revealed! 

Pst: We'll clue you in on something else — this secret is also the key to the raddest (and cheapest) gap year ... here's a gap year guide to help you out on this. 

Ready for this secret??

Are you sure?

Alright, here it is — head teaching! Head teaching is one of the best parts of ILP because it gives you the opportunity to go on multiple semesters for the price of one! (Check out Ariel's story who did seven semesters for the cost of one. You'll just have to read the story to get all the details). 

But to get a little more info on what we mean by ILP head teachers, keep reading:

  • Who are they?
  • What do they do? 
  • What are the perks of head teaching? 
  • Who can head teach? 

Who are they?

Our ILP head teachers are peer-aged volunteers who have served abroad with ILP for one or more semesters and are experienced in our teaching method. 

What do they do?

Head teachers do more behind the scenes than others in their group might even be aware of. They are the leaders of the group. They hold regular training meetings with the volunteers, evaluate the teachers during classes, and give them advice on how to make teaching easier and more successful.

They are the middle man between our office and the school and participate in weekly Skype calls with the ILP directors to report and solve any problems or concerns. They help things run smoothly and keep everything in order. They do their best to keep the peace within the group and create a good environment for the volunteers. They are the "go to" person for pretty much everyone involved that semester.  

ILP China

What are the perks of head teaching?

Head teaching has many perks, but the biggest one is how affordable it is! If you head teach, your program fees are waived (airfare, food, housing, language classes, culture classes and visa are included) and you get a stipend to help pay for your traveling expenses, shopping money, etc. Not a bad deal, right? Just think of how many ILP countries and semesters you can go on for next to nothing. 

Who can head teach?

Our ILP alumni can head teach! Here are the requirements for head teaching:

  • Have served abroad with ILP one or more times
  • Demonstrated understanding of teaching the ILP method correctly your first semester
  • Worked well with all members of your ILP group 

ILP Europe


It's pretty simple! If you do well on your first semester, you are a good candidate to apply for a head teacher position.

Keep in mind there are far fewer head teacher positions than volunteer positions and the positions are given based of qualifications (and not first-come-first-serve). Head teacher positions are competitive and interviews are held, similar to a job application. Applying early is always a good idea. You can even apply to be a head teacher in the middle of your first ILP semester (More about when to apply as a head teacher right here.)

But — If you are interested in applying now, click below:

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Topics: ILP Basics

Exploring The World For Over 25 Years

Over the years of assisting more than 6,000 volunteers in their desire to travel and make a difference in the lives of others, ILP has seen what works and what doesn't.

We've gathered our tips here for making your semester abroad a successful one.

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