What Is It Like To Teach Real English Learners In The UK? | i-to-i TEFL Blog
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Expert TEFL Advice

What Is It Like To Teach Real English Learners In The UK?

There’s a new course in town and it’s making waves in the industry. It’s called the EDI CertTEFL and it’s the highest level of accreditation available for a TEFL certificate – equivalent to a CELTA.

There are plenty of exciting elements of the course that’ll blow other courses out of the water (not to mention the fact that the course takes place on six consecutive Saturdays, so there’s no need to quit your job to attend), but I wanted to run you through the most exciting part of the EDI CertTEFL course. For me, it is what makes this course stand out.

What is it like to teach real English learners in the UK?

I attended two of the six sessions, observing the tutors teaching real adult English learners so I’m here to report back on how it all went and why it’s so exciting.

The English learners were divided in to two levels (pre-intermediate and upper-intermediate) and the tutors on the course were notified in advance which level they would be teaching and when.  The English learners would arrive to the classroom before the class started, giving the tutors the opportunity to interact with them, leading to a comfortable vibe in the classroom, which is what we love about our TEFLers, they’re laid back, approachable and relaxed.

There was a really authentic feel to the classes with a mixture of learners from Spain, Korea, Portugal, France and Poland present.  Unlike the classroom course, where your fellow tutors pretend to be English learners when delivering lessons, there’s no escape route in your class here.  You can’t say ‘OK everyone stop pretending now, back to speaking English please!’ it’s a real test and you either sink or swim.

Don’t panic!  With this course your lessons are observed by a TEFL tutor, so you’re not alone.  Having the benefit of being able to look back with them and say ‘yep, that worked and that stank’ is something every TEFLer-to-be should embrace.  I’ve taught in Uganda and Kenya and I would have loved the opportunity for practice, before stepping into that classroom.

Sink or swim, there’s no difference between them on this course; you’ll get constructive feedback whatever the outcome.  But I’d rather sink surrounded by experts and peers to help me make the next step!


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