There have always been a lot of misconceptions with TEFL teachers. Teaching English as a Foreign Language or TEFL teachers are often depicted to have an easier job than with regular government or state teachers. But that is far from the truth. TEFL teachers are presented with the same level of hardships and challenges as secondary or high school teachers. TEFL teachers also tasked with adapting to a new environment. That means they would have to fit into the culture of the country they are placed in, work within that country’s system, and live with other people which make their job much more difficult.
While there are hardships that come with TEFL, you should know that taking on TEFL teaching can lead you towards new skills, new friendships, great memories, and the opportunity to see the world.
Here is how you can survive the world of TEFL.
- Get Certified. There may be countries that accept native English speakers without a certificate but taking a TEFL course is not just about getting the best TEFL certification. It is about learning the basics of teaching and how you can inspire your students to persevere in their learning. If you don’t take TEFL courses, you would have to learn these basics the hard way.
- Look Professional. No matter what type of teacher you are, you must always appear presentable. You should appear like a professional and not a wandering backpacker. Try to dress formally especially in Asia where appearance and first impressions are always important. Looking professional means looking smart.
- Local Customs and School Rules. Since you are venturing into a new world, it is important that you learn the local customs as well as the rules of the school you will be working in. You do not want to offend your students or your colleagues on the first day now, do you?
- Avoid Talking Too Much. While it is your job to talk, you should also give time to your students to speak so that they’ll be able to practice what they are learning from you.
- All work and no fun will get you nowhere. Learn how to enjoy while working. Get to know your colleagues and some people from your neighborhood. Always be friendly.