Teach Enrich Empower
Teaching in Italy
An unexpected redundancy one damp February morning transpired to be quite a life changing event. For the previous four years I had sat my working days at a desk in the city of London, employed in the insidious industry of sales. Life had become a dull routine: catch the early morning train, work, and then back home again.
The next morning, whilst scrolling around the internet for a new job, somewhat out of character I began to look for work abroad. It was there I saw a huge demand for English teachers in what seemed every corner of the globe. Teaching was something I had never thought about and very different to anything I had ever done. A couple of clicks or so later and I had found The TEFL Academy who had a London branch, so rather cautiously I gave them a call.
Within the first few minutes of speaking to The TEFL Academy any uncertainties I had were eased, and I had signed up to an intensive 120-hour course. The weekend portion of the course, held in London, was to begin each day at 9am and would last until 7pm. During which all that is needed to make you a confident teacher will be covered, I got told.
Arriving at class early I took up a good perch in the front row. Not to my surprise, the course instructor was an experienced old TEFLER with over twenty-five years of first-hand experience. Between coaching what makes a good teacher and a good lesson, she mixed quirky anecdotes and on the job stories. Moreover, she constantly reassured us teachers to be and instilled a belief that teaching abroad was an achievable reality.
Imbued with this new teaching confidence I grabbed the bull by the horns and began phoning schools advertising positions in Italy – somewhere warmer than cold Britain. On my third call I got offered a job over the phone in an ESL school in Naples (somewhere I had never been).
“As for cold Britain and my job in sales – well that’s now just a long ago memory.”
On arrival I was shown around by the director of studies and introduced to the other teachers (an eclectic bunch of English speakers from around the planet) and its owners. Everything was how I imagined it would be. There was a small library with what appeared every conceivable teaching tool, book and piece of equipment, small rooms for individual lessons and a couple of larger rooms for the group classes.
After, it was the turn of the students: An army colonel; an airline pilot, a judge, lawyers and many other professionals – I really couldn’t believe the huge scope of learners all wanting to learn English. In addition, there was a group of teenagers with ambitious plans for their future.
Eight months on and I’m comfortably subsumed in my new life and role. I study Italian three times a week and travel around the country at the weekends. As for cold Britain and my job in sales – well that’s now just a distant memory.
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