Saving money and maximizing your travel experience with the teach English abroad
Nowadays, it feels as though the cost of living is rising. This can be especially tough for those who enjoy travelling, with aspects such as travel tickets, accommodation, as well as tourist highlights to factor in.
Therefore, it pays to think about different working options that enable a flexible travel timetable, while still earning enough to have the best possible travel experience. Luckily, help is at hand in the form of becoming a TEFL (Teach English as a Foreign Language) teacher.
Below, a quick and handy guide to starting out as a TEFL teacher will be included, alongside some of the best ways to ensure that any job application goes straight to the top of a recruiter’s list. Additionally, there will also be several useful tips about TEFL itself, from the benefits of getting certified, all the way through to a great place to teach TEFL right now.
What is TEFL?
Simply put, TEFL is the teaching of English to speakers of other languages. This can be as varied as grammar, syntax, vocabulary, or exam preparation.
Students from every corner of the planet are in need of a TEFL teacher who is patient, understanding and supportive of their unique language learning needs. This is why it is especially important to be prepared, and to get ahead of any potential questions that a TEFL student might have.
How can a new TEFL prepare themselves effectively?
The first and most obvious answer to this question is to get a reputable and reliable TEFL certification. In fact, The TEFL Org conducted a study and found that the majority of new TEFL teachers felt more confident and better equipped to take on their new vocation as a result of such courses.
What’s more, these programs are filled with relevant and current information on all things English, from how and when to use conditional tenses, through to the changing meanings of adjectives over time. For instance, words such as ‘bad’ and ‘wicked’ might mean something completely different, depending on the context, and these certifications can really help to explain these distinctions in easy and straightforward terms.
Additionally, these courses are the ideal way to encounter other new TEFL teachers, who are probably experiencing similar thoughts and feelings about their new career path. Thus, having a support network to get through the more challenging moments of the program is always a bonus, as well as having the chance to make friends to keep in touch with long after the course is over.
Finally, it is well worth mentioning that many countries do actually require a form of TEFL certification to be able to enter successfully, as part of their visa application processes. For all these reasons, there really is no time like the present to get going and apply for a genuine TEFL certification.
Can a TEFL teacher work online or in person?
Indeed, once the TEFL teacher has their certificate to hand, they are able to work both virtually and in physical TEFL classrooms. There are certainly upsides to both, for example those who wish to teach in person get to enjoy the dynamism and pure energy that this kind of learning setting can bring.
Also, there are no worries about the reliability of an internet connection on either end of the call impacting a presentation on an important language topic, or that background noise could potentially distract students from hearing what is being said.
On top of that, many new TEFL teachers were brought up in this more conventional academic environment, so it makes more sense that they may prefer to pass on their knowledge in this kind of arena. Besides, collaborative learning is often much smoother and more direct when done in person, and the gains that students can make in this environment could be monumental.
What is an example of a great place to teach TEFL in person?
To provide in person teaching of TEFL, Costa Rica is a real up and comer in this domain. To begin with, the relatively low cost of living that can be found in Costa Rica, especially as compared to many high-tax nations, means that it is possible to survive and thrive without having to teach non-stop.
Furthermore, Costa Rica boasts a climate that can be suitable for many tastes, from coastal living by the beach, through to cooler mountainous regions, and even the opportunity to sample authentic jungle territory during weekends or national holidays. Hence, there really is something for everyone, and plenty of getaway chances to be had throughout the year.
On a side note, Costa Rica is a country that is in real need of energetic and enthusiastic TEFL teachers to work with learners of all ages, as well as levels from beginner to advanced. This means that the new TEFL teacher can really think about giving their know-how and expertise to the learning group that they think they can help best, whether be kindergartners, teenagers, or even adults.
Why might some TEFL teachers prefer to teach online?
However, in this digital age, it might simply be more convenient for many TEFL teachers to work online. For one thing, the chance to cut out the morning and evening commute to and from a physical location could be utilised for lesson planning, teaching lessons, or even taking a breather to refresh before getting back to work.
Another advantage to teaching TEFL online is that it is possible to have a more flexible schedule than most traditional in-person teaching offers. This is because learners come from all over the world, and these time zone differences can be adapted so that the TEFL teacher works at the times of day that are most suitable for them.
For example, if the TEFL teacher is an early bird, then they could set up a few morning classes on topics as diverse as sports or growing one’s own business, before heading out to do some daytime sightseeing. By contrast, a night owl could prefer to push their lessons back later in the day, working with TEFL students at a time that is more conducive to them. This flexibility is one of the main attractions of teaching TEFL online.
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