There are plenty of opportunities for long-term employment positions in the field of English teaching to non-native English speakers. Some of these positions involve not only teaching English, but also administrative positions. If you are interested in making a career out of teaching English as a foreign language, or even if you just want to do it as a short-term experience, getting TEFL Accreditation may help.
As you teach English to foreign speakers, you will likely have a diverse audience of students. The age range of class members can be from 18 years old to 80 years old. The backgrounds, lifestyles, and careers will also vary. This is one reason that it is helpful to take some classes yourself, in order to hone your teaching skills. By taking certain courses, you may qualify yourself for TEFL Accreditation.
One area of skill that some TEFL courses focus on, and that is particularly important, is classroom management. This includes techniques of leadership, confidence, and organization. This can include developing a course outline, description, syllabus, and schedule. It should be clear that you are the instructor, even if some of your pupils are CEO’s of major companies who are used to being the person in charge. Another area of TEFL course focus may be classroom resources and materials. This can include developing your own materials and activities, finding interesting materials in newspapers, websites, or books, and keeping your materials and resources up-to-date and relevant to your students. Some TEFL course offerings will focus on teaching English to a particular career niche or need, such as secretarial, business, presentations, etc.
Before you try to teach English, it’s essential to know and understand the intricacies of the language. As a prerequisite to higher-level TEFL courses, and as a requirement for TEFL Accreditation you may need to take a course that covers English grammar and phonetics. Many native English speakers presume that they know the essential concepts of English grammar, spelling, and pronunciation. However, many are surprised at how much they learn about their native tongue in these foundational courses. By taking these foundational courses, you review what you already know and fill in the gaps, in case there are any, of any information or concepts you may not have yet learned. In this way, you are guaranteed to have excellent competency of the concepts you are teaching.
TEFL Accreditation does not require that you speak a language in addition to English. However, if you are living in a non-English speaking country it is advantageous to speak the predominant language of the country you are in. Some learning of a foreign language is helpful in understanding how to teach a language to others as well.