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English for Dharma Purposes…teaching monks English at a Buddhist Institute in Sarnath, India

Posted By: Sarnath International Nyingma Institute <[email protected]>
Date: Wednesday, 19 June 2019, at 4:07 p.m.

Teaching Position Available at the Sarnath International Nyingma Institute ( www.sinibridge.org )

English for Dharma Purposes…teaching monks English at a Buddhist Institute in Sarnath, India

We have an opening for an ESL teacher at the Sarnath International Nyingma Institute (SINI) in Sarnath, India for the period beginning September 23rd, 2019 through April 15th, 2020, with the possibility of a two-year extension.

We are looking for an experienced teacher with CELTA (or equivalent) certification. Teachers should also be culturally sensitive and adaptable to the cultural differences and traditions that are present in this environment. Teachers will teach to specific English needs, adapt and design materials, create lesson plans, write quizzes and tests, and participate in programs and seminars held at the Insitute.

The teachers’ accommodations are on campus in single-occupancy rooms and include a private bathroom, AC, and balcony. Three wholesome vegetarian meals are served each day with the monastic students in the dinning hall.

Our students are monks primarily from Tibet, Bhutan, and Nepal. Their English language ability ranges from beginner to intermediate.

Although we are a Buddhist institute serving the monastic community, it is not necessary for our teachers to be Buddhist practitioners or to have prior experience with the Dharma. The SINI community places a high value on harmony, joy, and contemplation. Our founder, Tarthang Tulku, is a Nyingma Lama and has dedicated his life to preserving the Dharma. His small community of students is dedicated to serving others and largely adopts the work-as-practice path. Open-minded and enthusiastic teachers from all backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

More information about the Institute and the English for Dharma Purposes Program:

SINI is located in Sarnath, where the Buddha gave his first teachings. It is outside of the ancient city of Varanasi, one of India’s most holy cities along the Ganges River.

The SINI English for Dharma Purposes program is a three-year-long program designed to provide students from Tibetan monasteries complete English language immersion with native English teachers and staff in a residential and academic living environment.

In the residential program, students are encouraged to speak in natural settings, take field trips to historical and sacred Buddhist sites, make oral presentations, and experience new teaching methods in order to work toward language fluency. Students live, eat, and work with native English-speaking teachers, guests, and staff, providing them a well-rounded experience engaging in real-life dialogues.

Mature students, primarily monks aged over 25 years, are enrolled in this unique program that provides a foundation in English that will facilitate the individual student’s Dharma service in the world. Beyond achieving basic communication skills in reading, listening, speaking, and writing, students will advance to giving Dharma talks in English and supporting translations of the Dharma into English. Students accepted into this selective program are provided a full immersion experience at the Institute.

The classes are small, ranging from 5 to 10 students, and students are taught with the focus on the learner technique whereby the teacher adapts lesson plans and classroom management to suit the needs of the students. Teachers in this program are qualified to teach English as a second language and must be able to tailor their teaching methods to serve this unique program.

Teachers are encouraged to use a wide range of activities and techniques in class in order to facilitate learning. These may include pair or group work, classroom discussions, role plays, or independent reading and research projects. Teachers are also encouraged to explore the use of video and film in their classes. In addition to classroom instruction, students may also receive one-on-one tutoring with their teachers and volunteers at the Institute. The teaching hours are 20-25 hours per week, Monday through Saturday, in nice, new classrooms. On Saturdays, students and volunteers gather after dinner for an educational film.

In addition to ongoing learning in the classroom and in our residency program, the Institute facilitates field trips to the local Stupa, Ganges River, Bodh Gaya, and other sites of historical importance.

The academic year begins September 23rd and concludes on April 15th. During the monsoon months, students may either complete private retreats, or travel to cooler parts of India.

If you are interested in the position, please contact the Director of the Institute at Tsering Gellek at [email protected]. Please include your CV and a cover letter briefly describing your teaching experience and interest in this position.



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