Teach Enrich Empower
I Swapped Reporting for Teaching and I Don't Regret It
It’s safe to say that when I enrolled at The Tefl Academy, I had no idea that years down the line, it would lift me out of a soulless career and an unhappy lifestyle.
I was working as a news reporter in London when it dawned on me that enduring stress-induced nosebleeds, sleepless nights and anxiety attacks were not sustainable. I had also lost my sense of self as the hobbies I once loved – reading, painting and travelling – were now non-existent.
Travelling abroad, meeting new people, experiencing different cultures and creating memories that will be the source of many chuckles and reminiscing later in life, that is what I truly want to do. It is also what drew me to enrol onto The Tefl Academy course when I graduated from university three years earlier.
Fast forward one evening, I remembered the 120 hours I worked to gift myself the opportunity to travel and work. I have always been drawn to Spanish and Latin American culture, history, music and language, so it was no surprise that Colombia was the first country that sprung to mind. However I was also aware of my vulnerable state and my longing to escape, so I decided to choose somewhere closer to home – Spain.
Within two weeks I quit my job, told my landlady I was leaving and mentally prepared to uproot my life and move abroad for the first time. I was terrified. It seemed that everything, my studies and interests, had led me to choose the career I was leaving.
But as usual, it turned out I had nothing to worry about. I was placed in a primary and infant school in Murcia, a city in southern Spain. I was instantly relieved and reassured by their warm and enthusiastic welcome. The slow pace, the warm gaze of the sun which is (almost) always shining and the kind locals were exactly what I needed in my moment of crisis.
“Travelling abroad, meeting new people, experiencing different cultures and creating memories that will be the source of many chuckles and reminiscing later in life, that is what I truly want to do.”
My experience also led me to fall in love with teaching. As the daughter of a teacher, I always thought I wouldn’t follow in my mum’s footsteps. But as usual, my mum was right when she told me my personality was suited to teaching rather than journalism. Children’s constant curiosity, bewilderment and enthusiasm have reminded me to be grateful for the small things in the world.
This summer, I’ll be leaving Spain after living here for just over one year. I’m excited to say that this experience has led to a huge milestone in my life – the start of my teaching career. In September I will start my primary teacher training course in my home city.
But of course, before that, I will manage to squeeze in one last adventure. Over the summer I plan to volunteer as an English teacher in a Greek refugee camp. Holding a TEFL qualification is vital to their criteria and without it, I won’t be able to help vulnerable refugees in need of support, kindness and education – a cause that has always been close to my heart.
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