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 Here is the SDE Packing list for our incoming teachers.

Download the PDF version here

SDE New Teacher Packing ListSDE New Teacher Packing List


Depending on your body type, you may be able to find some items here, however, it is suggested you bring 4 seasons worth of options.

Summer: 100% humidity, temperatures reaching about 38-39⁰C/100-102⁰F

Fall: Typhoon season with high temperatures and humidity

Spring: Hot, humid and rainy

Winter: Cool temperatures with some rain and extreme dampness. Often feels colder than weather report.
NOTE: apartments and buildings in Shenzhen are not insulated or heated. Be prepared to layer up.



If you are under 5’6 with a smaller   build, you will probably be able to shop well here. If you are not, bring   what you think you might need for the year.


For work: most schools don’t enforce a strict dress code. Business casual at most. Best to avoid any clothing that is too revealing. Covering up tattoos is also necessary.

Be sure to bring most things you need, as it is difficult to find things in a bigger make here. If you are over 5’10   with a larger build, you may find it hard to shop here, but not impossible!


For work: most schools don’t enforce a strict dress code. Business casual at most.

Polo’s and collared shirts are great. Best to avoid any clothing that is too revealing. Covering up tattoos is also necessary.

T-shirts (linen and cotton are best for summer)

T-shirts (linen and cotton are best for summer)

Tank tops (linen and cotton are best for summer)

Collared shirts and polo’s

Long sleeve shirts

Long sleeve shirts


Dress shirt/tie







Dress pants

Dress pants



Capri pants

Quick dry pants

Casual and fancy dresses (you will most likely attend some fancy events at your school) so be sure to bring some options)

Bathing suit

Quick dry pants

Active wear

Bathing suit


Active wear

Waterproof rain jacket


Light winter jacket

Waterproof rain jacket

Light winter jacket




Women’s shoes are widely available in sizes up to (40 EU) (8 U.S.) Larger sizes are seldom available.

Men’s shoes are widely available in sizes up to (42/43 EU) or (9/10 U.S.) Larger sizes are seldom available.

Sandals/flip flops

Sandals/flip flops

Running shoes

Running shoes

Dress shoes

Dress shoes

Comfortable work shoes

Comfortable work shoes

Waterproof/ footwear (Crocs work well in this climate and have many styles that are acceptable for work and other activities)

Waterproof/ footwear (Crocs work well in this climate and have many styles that are acceptable for work and other activities)

Hiking shoes

Hiking shoes


Medicine (most can be found here in China)





Pepto Bismal/GasX/Tums


Cold and Flu Remedy

Cough Syrup

Antihistamine (some countries don’t allow these through customs, so double check your flight path before packing)

Anti-itch/fungal cream

Eye drops

Top up on prescriptions before you come and bring the pads with you

Birth control (although, you can get it over-the-counter in Hong Kong)


Vitamins (most can be found here in China)






Hygiene and Toiletries

Deodorant (one year supply but can also be found in select stores)


Floss (do it every day!)

Emergency pocket tissues (no paper in bathrooms here in China)


Feminine Hygiene

Tampons (not available here)

Pads (you can get them here, however, there have been issues with quality)

Diva Cup (to avoid have to bring the above two)


Bath (most can be found here in China)

Travel-size set of shampoo, conditioner, body wash and wash cloth (to get you started)

Beard trimmer (ensure you have a convertor with surge protection)

Sensitive skin products

*Many chain stores offer western brands for products such as shampoo/ conditioner, body wash, soap, face wash, cleansers, creams, etc.



Hair products for curly or ethnic hair

Hair straightener (ensure you have a convertor with surge protection)

Curling iron (ensure you have a convertor with surge protection)

Make-up: Lighter or darker skin tones are harder to match, but most products are available at Sephora and other beauty shops

*You can find make-up and specialty items


Weather Accessories

Waterproof shoes or boots and jacket

Quick dry pants


Rain cover for backpack

Sunscreen (most in China have whitening ingredients)



Laptop or tablet

External battery for phone (very important!)

An unlocked smartphone (you can get a here, but if you already have a working phone you can easily get a sim card here)

Surge protected electrical converter

USB and portable hard drive (can get them here, however it’s good to come prepared for lesson sharing, etc. during orientation)

Note: Shenzhen is a great place to find any sort of electronics. The city is often referred to as the Silicon Valley of Asia.


Internet Access: VPN

China restricts access to sites such as Netflix, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, some news sources, etc. To be able to view these sites, it is recommended you download a VPN to your laptop/tablet and smartphone before you arrive. Note: Netflix may still be blocked even with a VPN.


Express and Astrill VPN is highly recommended by expats:




Work Documents **VERY IMPORTANT** (digital and physical copies)

Please refer to the visa guide and other support materials sent by your recruiter.

If you have any questions, please ask your recruiter, specialist, or visa handler. 

Other Documents (digital and physical copies)

Medical prescriptions (for lenses or   medication)

Credit/debit and insurance cards

Contact details of friends, family, SDE employees

Travel tickets and/or travel itinerary

Luggage tags

Driver’s license (not needed, but good to have)

Travelers cheques

Copy of cards you previously used or currently use




Before you leave home

Watch Orientation videos!

Ensure vaccines are up-to-date and check to see if you need any others (should have done previously)

Doctor check-up (should have done previously)

Dental check-up

Optometrist check-up

Tax information – find out what you will need to claim before it’s time to file (you may need to set money aside each month)

Set a travel alert on your bank

Take care of any online accounts such as changing passwords, taking off SMS protection, etc.  (most accounts will lock you out due to inconsistencies of login location)


Packing Tips

·         Make digital and photocopies of everything that you can

·         Take care of packing the most important things first (visa documents, other documents, prescriptions, etc.)

·         Despite the long packing list, try not to pack too many unnecessary things

·         Roll your clothes instead of folding them (saves room and no wrinkles!)

·         Prepare teaching materials in advance (download songs, videos and ppt games before coming)

·         Take a few gifts for teachers, students, recruiter and specialist!


发布时间: 2018 - 04 - 03

Whatever you want to call it, TEFL, TESOL, or whatever you might have heard, teaching English as a foreign language can be a difficult concept for people to grasp.  People often say, “How can you teach English to people if you don't already speak their language?”, but it's not as difficult as you might think, and there are many companies, with many programs designed to help you build a foundation to become a great teacher of English to speakers of other languages, regardless of what language they speak. 

New to TEFL

Click here to learn more

To meet China work visa requirements, we recommend the TFA 120 hour online course which will be reimbursed by SDE upon your arrival.

SDE partners with an organization called TFA Academy.  TFA is a  globally recognized TEFL provider, and they provide a certification that is accepted in China to qualify for your Chinese working Z visa.    

If you don't already have a TEFL, that's okay, just reflect that in your application and someone from our hiring team will tell you how we can help you to get certified, and qualify to teach in China.  After all, if we think you'll be a great teacher, we want to help you get over any obstacles that might get in your way of coming to China and being an asset to our team.  

发布时间: 2017 - 07 - 20

Preparing for Your School Interview, Skype Interview or Video Submission 

1. What to Wear 


Please make sure you are well presented, regardless of whether you will be there in person, online or in front of a camera. This means business casual, at least. 


2. What to Talk About 


a. Who You Are: One of the first things the school will want to know is who you are, here's a list to help you prepare: 

 i. Name 

ii. Age 

iii. Where you are from 

iv. Summary of teaching and/or education 

v. Why you want to teach in Shenzhen or this age group (or even better, in this particular school) 


b. Relevant Experience:  Consider what you have done that makes you suitable for working at this particular school. Do you have similar experience? Have you worked with kids of the same age before? Make a list. 


c. Your Interests: What interests do you have that might excite the school? Beyond just wanting to teach EFL, do you have other things to offer? Music? Drama? Art? Sports? Make a list. 


d. Consider Your Audience: All schools will have their own individual expectations, and you can always ask us if you are looking for more guidance. In the meantime, here are some general tips based on different types of school: 


Public Schools in general will want teachers who can excite their students' interest in English and become an active member of the school’s staff. With this in mind you should think about how you will engage and excite large classes of students that you only see once a week, and how you are willing to get involved with the school outside of your weekly classes. 


Kindergartens and Primary Schools will be looking for more lively teachers who can inspire their young students. How can you show this in your interview? If that's not your style, but you're still confident of teaching these ages, how can you show that? 


Middle Schools and High Schools will expect more experienced, and perhaps more “serious” teachers. Think about how you will demonstrate that during your interview. 


Make a list to prepare for your target school. 


e. Show Your Interest (Interview Only): One great way to express your interest in a school is to come prepared with a list of questions about them and how they do things. Just be careful not to ask too many overly-specific questions, as these may be difficult for school reps to answer and leave them embarrassed. Here are some suggestions: 

 i. What grades would you like me to teach? 

ii. What topics would you like me to teach? 

iii. Is there a textbook? Would you like me to follow it? 

iv. Are there any activities you would like me to help with? 

v. What are the students at your school like? 


These are good questions that show an interest in teaching, the students and helping the school. 


3. Skype Interviews and Video Submissions 


a. Environment: What's behind you? Is it distracting? Does it give a bad impression? Is it noisy where you are? Are there other people or sounds that might interrupt your interview or recording? Eliminate all these factors before you start. 


b. Dry Run: Can you do a trial run with a 1 minute video or Skype call to a friend or family member? This would be a great way to make sure your voice is clear and the video quality is good. If you identify problems through a trial run, you can avoid wasting time and potentially missing the opportunity to say more during your interview

发布时间: 2017 - 07 - 20
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