Teach Enrich Empower
Francesca Triggs - Teaching in France
Last year I started studying Chinese at Edinburgh University, knowing that my third year would be spent in China, and would doubtless lead to more extensive travelling around Asia in general.
With this in mind, I decided to get my TEFL qualification in order to give me the option of teaching English around the world, partly in order to help fund my trips, and partly to enhance my usefulness on volunteering projects I planned to get involved in along the way.
The structure of the course with the TEFL Academy suited my needs very well, involving a weekend’s worth of training in a hotel in the city, followed by easy online access to reading materials that helped me to complete my assignments in my own time, fitting them around my studies. The feedback on each paper was always very fast and useful.
The course opened my eyes to whole new ways of learning, and it was interesting to reflect on the effectiveness of the various different approaches I have been exposed to over the course of my own school life.
“The structure of the course with the TEFL Academy suited my needs very well!”
Having now completed the course, I have started offering private tutoring to people in my home village of Eymet. This is when living in rural France comes in useful, as demand for English teachers is always high. Not too many years ago it was I who was struggling to learn French, but now having successfully made the transition from beginner to fluent, I find my own experiences of language learning greatly help me to understand the needs of my students. Private tutoring allows me to tailor my classes very specifically to the needs of the learner, as I can imagine is harder to do when teaching larger groups. Although planning in advance is a must, I have learnt that a bit of flexibility is needed if you can see that a pupil is not responding well to a given method of teaching, or activity.
I am not sure I would recommend the area for teachers looking to experience France at its most bustling; Larger cities in the region such as Bordeaux or Toulouse are perhaps more interesting to spend long periods of time in, and cost of living in generally less than in the UK.
I would recommend the course for anyone keen on enriching their travels with a greatly rewarding experience, especially for those among my fellow students who can find time to fit it in around their studies.
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