Lessons Learned From Starting a Business While Teaching English Abroad
Starting a new business can be one of the most challenging things to do. There are so many aspects to consider, from naming the company in a way that makes it clear and easy to remember, through to setting up a payment system that is simple and reliable for customers to pay with.
In the world of TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language), this is no exception. In fact, due to the nature of different student types, it might indeed be more difficult to sustain growth than in other fields.
To combat this, below is a guide to some of the lessons learned from starting a business while teaching English abroad. This advice should be implementable for any new entrepreneur, who wishes to extend their TEFL expertise and work for themselves.
Lesson 1: Get TEFL Certified
TEFL students do have a preference when it comes to their choice of teacher. They would like them to be knowledgeable, interesting, and interested, and one of the optimal ways they have of being able to feel reassured about this is to study with a TEFL teacher who has genuine TEFL certification.
Here are a couple of suggestions to get you started, and these are a few of the most highly recommended ones. Getting a reliable TEFL qualification at the beginning means coming to lessons with a toolkit of skills and abilities to help learners effectively, and can actually streamline processes such as lesson preparation and assessment.
What’s more, a lot of countries actually require a bona fide TEFL qualification as part of their visa entry requirements, so it is necessary on that level too. Last but not least, the courses are the ideal way to pick the brains of the course leaders, and get the inside track on all things TEFL from the team of experienced and helpful teacher trainers.
Lesson 2: Learn About the World
Being a TEFL teacher is partly a chance to impart information about the English language, from its grammar and syntax through to its ever evolving vocabulary. However, it is also a wonderful opportunity to learn about the world from students, whether it be a major sporting event such as the FIFA World Cup, or a good news story from the media from distant lands such as Thailand.
In most cases, TEFL students love sharing their own unique perspectives and viewpoints on the globe, and how they see it is almost always fascinating and eye-opening for the TEFL teacher. In return, the overwhelming majority of TEFL learners hope for that to be reciprocated, listening and learning to the stories that their teacher has to share with them too.
Lesson 3: Be Prepared
Although some TEFL lessons can be freestyle, and go in a direction that no lesson plan could ever anticipate, a lot of TEFL students feel more comfortable in their learning process if the teacher has a thorough plan of action for the lesson of the day. This could start with something as simple as a warm-up activity or game, that might reactivate prior learning or just be a fun way to break the ice.
After that, it is typical for the TEFL teacher to present the main topic of discussion for the class ahead, perhaps with the assistance of a visually appealing slideshow presentation or even a short video that can exemplify a language point in action. This is normally followed by a guided practice activity, maybe on a whiteboard or interactive writing space, or for those who are really tech-savvy, an online quiz through an application or website that supports that technology.
Finally, the students are allowed to practice independently, maybe with a free and open discussion, or a role-play activity that shows the acquisition of knowledge in practice. In any case, with this rough skeleton, students can feel reassured that their well-prepared TEFL teacher is taking care of their learning needs in the best way possible.