Christopher Stevenson

Teach Enrich Empower

You'll only regrets the things in life you didn't do

I'm Chris, a 32-year-old English teacher in China. About 2 years ago I decided that my life wasn't challenging enough and realised that I wanted to take on China.

My 5-year plan was to go there, immerse myself in the language culture of this gigantic nation, and to do that I needed a job. Luckily, Chinese people are keen to learn English, and I happen to speak it. The next stage of course, was to get qualified.

With a background in IT training and running a successful nutritional education company, I already had a feeling I’d enjoy teaching English, but when I looked at jobs, they all needed a 120-hour TEFL course certificate, so I set out to get one. I spent many hours researching different schools to use for the TEFL course, and finally chose The TEFL Academy due to their strong reviews and a convenient location for me to study as the deciding factors.

8 months later I was on a flight to China (the Visa process took a while, along with arranging employees to manage my company in the UK and sorting out my tax stuff). I have been living and working in Nanjing city and it really was the right thing for me to do. When I arrived here it already felt like home. The TEFL Academy course helped me immensely to prepare for the arrival in a foreign classroom and begin to teach immediately. Don’t get me wrong, I was of course a little nervous when I taught my first class, but I felt equipped with all the knowledge that was taught to me during the online course and fond memories of the 10-hour classroom time, where I met some incredible people who were also about to start changing people’s lives by becoming English teachers. That 10-hour course flew past and I was surprised at how much I’d learned and how confident I felt afterwards. I owe a huge amount of thanks to Judy, my tutor, for her tips and inspiration during the 10-hour classroom course. I learnt many invaluable ideas in Judy’s class and I’m putting them to good use. Although I have no other experiences to compare with, I would definitely recommend The TEFL Academy to obtain your TEFL certificate based on my experience with the company.

“Go and do a TEFL course and see what the future holds for you.”

Living in China has been an extraordinary challenge, due to the fact that I cannot read, speak, nor understand Chinese, but the school I am working for has helped me to find everything I need, and I am now enjoying picking up the phrases I need to get around the city by bus, order some food, and even go travelling to other nearby cities by high-speed rail.

If I could give you any advice if you’re thinking about it, this is the one thing I’d say: You’ll only regret the things in life you hadn’t done, go and see what the future holds for you!

The students are all amazing, eager to learn, not just English itself, but also the culture of my city and country, my accent and dialect. They’re even happy to teach me Chinese and I’ve learned a lot of food and place-to-visit vocabulary. It’s absolutely phenomenal.

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