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CELTA, DELTA, MA? When is the best career moment for extra qualifications?

2nd September 2019

CELTA, DELTA, Trinity Dip, M.A. in Applied Linguistics… there is an increasing number of courses on offer for the aspiring English language teacher.  Navigating the opportunities and understanding the realities of what each brings is key if you are to make it all worth your while.  Many will start off their career attempting the CELTA or Trinity TESOL (also known as TEFL-I qualifications), the two most popular entry-level courses on offer in TEFL.  Ironically, what most teachers end up doing for their first jobs is nothing like the small groups of adult learners neatly grouped into levels, and so why the expectation and desire to put ourselves through it?  Well, obviously, in order to get a job.  Not to say that it is essential for your first teaching position.  In fact, most countries require a 120-hour teaching qualification, with only the UK, USA and Saudi Arabia actually stipulating that a CELTA/TESOL is required (Deady, 2019).  These shorter courses can be done...

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Work-Life Balance in TEFL

26th August 2019

It's hard to disagree that everything works best in equilibrium. The growing popularity of ideas such as slow living, mindfulness and hygge suggests that the world has finally woken up to the fact that one needs more in life than work. According to Alex Clark, a researcher from Edmond University in Canada “We need to stop seeing hobbies and work as zero-sum games”, a view that is supported by the findings of  the Corporate Executive Board in the USA, which show that “Employees who believe that they have a good work life balance are 21% more productive”. Clearly, achieving equilibrium between work and private life ought to be win-win for everyone. For a teacher this means having the energy and motivation to work, getting new ideas and being full of enthusiasm in class. This in turn gives students...

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Are native teachers better? Non-native teachers and self-esteem

20th August 2019

Teaching is not always a walk in the park. In fact, it is not only stressful but also draining as teachers give so much of themselves. I would argue that non-native teachers have an added stress: low self-esteem. “Are they good enough? Are they doing their jobs properly? Are the students happy? Are the students judging them based on their accent?” These are common questions that most non-native teachers ask themselves. It is true that native teachers ask themselves these questions too. However, non-native teachers might ask themselves these questions once too often, and they will probably give a negative answer...

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Couples teaching abroad - is it possible?

12th August 2019

Are you and your significant other both qualified teachers? Are you looking for a job abroad? Are you wondering whether it is a good idea to apply for jobs together? Read on and you will find the answers to your questions. When it comes to teaching abroad there are actually more advantages than disadvantages to working together. Let’s have a closer look at some of them...

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Transitioning from the in-person to the online classroom

6th August 2019

Working from home, flexible hours, customize your own classroom – becoming an online English teacher is so appealing, and there are lots of opportunities to get started. In this article, I will go through some of the most important changes and considerations I had to make when moving from the in-person to the online classroom. I believe that the rapport with students and sharing in students’ success is very similar, teaching online can be a very rewarding experience.

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The LGBTQIA+ Teacher Abroad: Doing your research

29th July 2019

‘You are so lucky!’ ‘I wish I could go on permanent holiday!’.  Probably the two most common responses on finding out I am an ESL teacher, and in one sense I understand it, we do seem to have a dream job. With a teaching certificate and your degree, the world is your oyster. Who among us can say we hate the fact that we can take our skills and find work in almost any country of the world? But for all of us there is a flipside to this luck. You miss things, the big and the small, you miss moments and gradually it can seem like people begin to forget you. What’s more it can feel... 

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The Flexible ESL Teacher - Teaching to Students' Interests

29th July 2019

When adult students come to class to begin learning English they are not going to want to learn about why 'read' is spelled the same in simple past but pronounced differently in present tense. Why you ask? Because it's not immediately relevant and therefore not of interest to their current lives. They are more than likely to have just arrived in a new country and are interested in learning the basics: how to navigate a new public transport system in their host city or how to order a cheeseburger without the embarrassment of causing a scene. Teaching to students’ interests can easily be done by placing...

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How Summer Teaching will help your Teaching Career

29th July 2019

Reminiscing on summer school evokes memories of golden beaches, dreamy blue skies, sport, friendship, and ceaseless laughter. A lot of the time it appears too good to be true. Cathartic moments occur on a daily basis. If you want to travel, meet people from all over the world, earn and save money, while doing something meaningful then consider working in a summer school! The benefits, both personal and professional, will make it worth while.

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The Surge to Online Teaching

29th July 2019

There is a mini-crisis looming in the world of English Language teaching.

Most companies which play in this area are still operating on the traditional business model. They have very expensive training centres filled with very expensive teaching staff, delivering very expensively designed and created training courses – always run on a very expensive computer network and displayed on different sizes and shapes of displays, some small and basic, some large and interactive, but...

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Handling Student Complaints

29th July 2019

Few would doubt that we are now living in a world of ever increasing expectations on the part of the consumer.  Everyone wants a bigger, better, TV; faster broadband; and more choice in everything. What’s more, these expectations are not confined to goods and services; they also apply to education.  Students learning English as a Foreign Language, particularly those in the private sector, are becoming more aware of their role as consumers and are becoming increasingly strident if...

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