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Thursday, May 31, 2012

Studying before you go - so you can work whilst you're there


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Studying before your trip - for the parent

I studied on-line teaching English as a Second Language. 
This will enable me to teach in some schools, or gain employment along the way if need be. 

Why teach English as a second language ?
From Chinese businessmen to Peruvian schoolchildren, many people around the globe want to learn English. 
This is great news for people wanting to work abroad and, with a little time, money and effort you too can put yourself in a position where you are virtually guaranteed some form of job teaching English abroad. 
I have known several people who gained great jobs in schools, and living with wealthy families on a wage with free accommodation and meals included.

Options with Learning
Initially you will have to ask yourself:
Do I want a recognised qualification?
Do I want to adopt the freelance approach?

What I chose
I did some research and found that in recent years there has been a marked increase in the number of organisations offering TEFL qualifications. 

These vary greatly in intensity, quality and price. 

If you are in UK it seems to be a lot easier as many of the schools have head-quarters in the UK.
The standard recognized qualification is the Royal Society of Arts (RSA)/ University of Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate (UCLES) Certificate for Teaching English as a Foreign Language to Adults. 
This is an intensive, practical course (four weeks if you undertake it on a full-time basis) and competition for places is stiff. 
You will have to attend an interview, at which you may be given a short written test dealing with common grammatical and semantic problems that may occur while you are teaching. 

This RSA Certificate courses cost in the region of £700-£1,000 - up to about $2,000 and you would have to head to the UK to start your trip, or before you travel.  
So not my chosen study course. 
Although this is a large lump sum to pay out it is worth remembering that the Certificate is highly thought of around the world and once you have it you will be able to virtually pick a job in the country of your choosing. 
Look at it as a valuable investment.

On-line Courses
I chose TESOL. 
It is on-line and you can take up to a year to complete.
It was hard discipline to study this way.
Also, the advantage of being taught by organisations like this is they often have language schools abroad, so once you have gained your qualification you are very likely to be given a job with them.

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What can I do once qualified to teach?

My skills can also be used if I am asked to speak to classes or in churches we visit.
I can also tach at some school, or privately give tuition.

 I believe in some places you can arrange lessons in exchange for meals with restaurant owners etc. 
If you decide to do this, make it fun. And have your child present; the child & you will both learn the foreign words for free, whilst you are teaching the person English. 

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A set of picture flash cards to take with you with English word on the back. 

This can be something your child makes up for you to take by cutting out pictures from toddler books or magazines. 
They then have to type the word of the computer, print, cut, and glue them on.
Try to have about 200 cards. 
Business size cards are good. 

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I suggest 2 ‘matching’ set cards so you can play games – i.e.: table and chairs; knife and fork; sun and moon etc.

I will add more to this section when I finish my studies.

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