Starting teaching

Getting qualified

Having completed your course and spent a few days recovering from exhaustion, you’ll probably start thinking about putting your new qualification to use. Most people finish the course with some kind of grammar reference and perhaps a course book at level B1 or B2. Whether or not you want to invest in more depends to some degree on what plans you have. If it’s likely that you’ll be teaching children outside the UK, it could well be worth stocking up on a few suitable books. If you are heading for a remote, under-resourced area then investing in a number of reference and course books is certainly something to consider.

A fair few schools around the world expect teachers to follow, in part, a particular course/syllabus. This has its attractions but it’s likely that after a short time you will want to enrich the course and replace awkward or boring material with something better. At this point having access to a range of material will be a great help. Apart from good old fashioned books there are online resources such as onestopenglish where for a yearly subscription you can download a whole range of lesson plans/material.

However it is not just teaching resources that you may well need. You will probably want to develop your language awareness and teaching style. Again, access to suitable books and videos will help enormously as will observing more experienced teachers where you work.

In your first year of teaching don’t expect every lesson to be a winner. Some lessons will flop, some students will be a pain and you’ll be asked some truly tricky questions about English usage. Just try to hang in there and believe that little by little the number of successful lessons will increase and the frequency of the ones you’d rather forget will decline. Perhaps there’s a local teachers’ club in the area that you could join.