Getting Started in the TEFL field

Help, tips and advice in teaching English

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Joined: 23 Jun 2011, 12:12
Status: Prospective Teacher
Location: Germany, Frankfurt

Getting Started in the TEFL field

Unread postby JansenB » 23 Jun 2011, 12:44

Hi Lucy,

I am a 37yr old American male, from Texas, living in Frankfurt Germany. I have 70 odd hours of college credits (hospitality management), I am a personal chef and male nanny, I am fluent in German, and I really want to start teaching English. I am looking for guidance in the direction of the best way to get started or the easiest way to get started before becoming the best :-) I do not have a degree but I did live/work in Europe for 10+ years before returning to the states for seven years until my recent return about six weeks ago.

I love to travel, I love to cook, I love to share stories and thrive on helping others achieve success and happiness. I feel would be a great teacher but there is so much information out there that I am challenged to get started on the right track. Can you help me with a bit of advice?

Thank you for your time,

P. Jansen Bowden

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Posts: 656
Joined: 13 Jan 2004, 16:09
Status: Teacher Trainer
Location: France

Re: Getting Started in the TEFL field

Unread postby Lucy » 25 Jun 2011, 14:53

Hi Jansen,

I love it when I hear people so enthusiastic about teaching English. It sounds as if you have the right personal qualities to become a teacher and you will be able to put this across well in an interview.

What you could do right now is read some good books on how to teach English: Jeremy Harmer’s How to Teach English or The Practice of English Language Teaching are a good place to start. Jim Scrivener’s Learning Teaching is also excellent and is possibly more accessible to a new teacher. By reading these, you will see if teaching really is for you and it will give you a good grounding for applying for TEFL courses. If you want to become the best, you will need to get a TEFL qualification. A certificate in TEFL is the place to start. The best are the Trinity certificate and CELTA. There are other courses out there but you said that you want to be the best; in my opinion that is the place to start. You need to be careful about which training centre you choose. There is a vast difference in the quality and reputation of courses offered; the cheapest may not be the best option. You can check out the TEFL training forum.

One thing you should be aware of is that some countries don’t accept teachers without a degree. This is a government stipulation in those countries (e.g. Thailand); so, there is absolutely no way around it.

I am sure you will succeed with your enthusiasm. Keep coming back to these forums; you’ll learn a lot here.

All the best,


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