How do you find work as an ESL teacher?

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Before you can even get an interview, you have to find an ESL post that you would like to apply for. Here are a few suggestions to help you find work as a novice ESL teacher – and let’s also hope Confucius’s is right.

First of all, you have to decide what sort of ESL teaching you want to do; there are three categories of ESL teaching that you should consider: voluntaryfreelance, and school ESL teaching. It should be pointed out that you must always use the World Wide Web (WWW) when you are job hunting. Nowadays, there are very few TEFL employers who don’t use the WWW: even newspapers are online, now. Let’s look at these teaching options in turn.

Voluntary ESL teaching posts can be found by simply entering a search string such as the following: ‘voluntary ESL teaching posts’‘voluntary TEFL’ ‘voluntary EFL posts’, etc. Don’t forget – most voluntary ESL work is done overseas. If you try entering similar search strings, here are a few typical sites that might be of interest (click on the links): http://www.gooverseas.com/teach-abroad/africa; http://www.gooverseas.com/hot-job/tanzania/47448; http://www.workingabroad.com/volunteer-organisations; http://www.vso.org.uk/

Freelance ESL teaching posts can be found by joining one of the online freelance sites: this is actually the best way because it is free to join, you get advertized for free, and thousands of potential clients visit these sites. The only disadvantage is that the freelance company retains a percentage of your fee, but this is not normally a very large amount. Here are a few sites that you might consider visiting: Guru: http://www.guru.com/; Freelancer: https://www.freelancer.com/; People Per Hour (PPH):http://www.peopleperhour.com/; Odesk: https://www.odesk.com/info/uk/welcome/. Alternatively, you can set up your own site; however, this is not recommended: you will not get easily discovered, you will normally have to pay to have your site hosted; you will have to pay for advertising, and you could have complications with getting you fees.

School ESL teaching posts (private and state) can be found by going directly to the school’s site: visit http://www.oxfordseminars.ca/esl-schools-directory/. Alternatively, you can visit sites such as the Guardian Newspaper’s ‘Guardianjobs’ site: http://jobs.theguardian.com/jobs/education/schools/secondary-teaching/english-as-a-foreign-language/. If you visit ‘onlinenewspapers’ at http://www.onlinenewspapers.com/ you will get a list of all the online newspapers that are published in any country in the world. You can also use an online ESL recruiter, for example, Footprints recruiting: http://www.footprintsrecruiting.com/and; and http://englishwork.com/english/index.html: EnglishWork.  Having decided which country you would like to teach in: contact an ESL recruiter that recruits for that country.

The ESL recruiter will charge you a fee for this service. While you are still studying for your TEFL certificate, spend some time researching these three categories. Don’t forget: there are also a lot of ESL posts in the UK.

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