ESL Teaching - Is it For You?
By Charles Hopkins
Published 04/21/2006 | Education
Would you like to teach English to foreigners in your country or travel to another country to teach? Many young people consider such employment advertisements with great interest since the position offers them the opportunity to travel and often does not require any experience other than being a native English speaker.
Foreign countries looking for English teachers greatly desire the instructor to be a native English speaker. The course materials may be provided or you may be asked to show previous teaching experience or a TEFL or TESL certificate.
Before you excitedly answer any employment ads you should learn the meaning of commonly used terms as well as recommendations for working locally or abroad.
TEFL: Teaching English Foreign Language; often refers to teaching English in a foreign country. Known to students as EFL classes.
TESL: Teaching English as a Second Language; usually refers to teaching English to foreigners in an English speaking country. Known to students as ESL classes.
Teaching Locally or Abroad?
For people who wish to travel TEFL can be a great opportunity to interact with new cultures and to finance traveling. It is important to investigate the country you will be traveling to as well as the employer offering the position to ensure you will be safe and have reliable work. You may decide to work with an agency based in your home country that will assist you with legal questions and assist you in making living arrangements.
While many foreign positions are available to individuals without experience or certification you will likely find the education and resources of a class to be valuable before taking an assignment. If you think you would like to try this career out you might offer your services locally, as a private tutor, or take an instruction class to familiarize yourself with the responsibilities and work required to teach a language.
If you choose to work in your own country there will be various guidelines for certification, experience and materials as determined by the employers. If you consider private tutoring you can research recommended course materials and methods online or at a book store or library. You can then advertise your services in a local paper or on college and university billboards.
Teaching English can be very rewarding. However, English is a language that is full of rule breaking nuances. Trying to explain these to a student can be difficult and a person needs to have patience and good personal skills to become an effective teacher.
If you would like to review what types of positions are available you can check them out online through employment and ESL teaching sites.