Last weekend I attended my practical TEFL training! For those of you who don’t know what this is; TEFL means ‘Teaching English as a Foreign Language.’ and it is something I have been thinking to do over the past few years but didn’t have the courage until now. This is my second to last teacher training to fully set me up on this new career path.
Every yoga teacher knows that teaching yoga is not always a sustainable career path; it’s not impossible but many teachers opt to do a different full time job as well as teaching yoga classes perhaps at the weekend or for summer retreats. This is one of the reasons why I decided to become a TEFL teacher, this qualification gives me the opportunity to teach English as a full time job and have a comfortable wage.
Not only that, it seems both fun and rewarding to teach English to kids and adults whose mother tongue is different. I love people from different cultures and most of my friends are not English.
Another factor is; Jon & I are in discussion about living and working abroad, even if it is only for a year because in the past as 20 somethings we never had that opportunity to take a gap year from Uni to travel like a lot of people we know. Now in our 30’s we both feel like we’ve missed out on that experience. TEFL is a fantastic qualification to have for me to find work in a school whilst we are traveling, it would be a great gateway job for the locals to get to know me and I may find a local yoga studio to teach in on the side?
The TEFL practical was actually really fun, our teacher was amazing and encouraged what’s called “student to student” interaction, so lots of group work, pair work and lots of discussion. There were moments where we’d become the students we might be teaching so to better understand how it feels to struggle learning a new language. Our teacher did this by teaching a short lesson in Catalan and we were not allowed to ask for help in English, we had to figure out what was going on by body language, repeating words our teacher taught and recognizing “false friends” which are words that sound the same as English. The training was very holistic and humanistic with a lot of focus on being playful within a simple framework. I felt so relaxed and confident during the intensive and I highly recommend it.
I’ve worked so hard to get to this point, I began my professional development in learning more about mental health, art & dance therapy, anatomy, special needs, child development and yoga philosophy among others. This year I qualified as a Kids yoga teacher and I am officially a trainee TEFL teacher. It will take me 6 months to fully complete this course and my absolute last course is my 200hour yoga teacher training which will happen some time in 2017, making me fully equipped to teach English, Yoga, Dance & Art to adults and children. I could even incorporate art, dance and yoga as part of my lesson plan for my English classes.
I feel amazing to have created this path for myself pretty much from scratch and with very little support.I am proud of where I am at in my life right now. This life has not been down to luck, this has been hard-work on a road less traveled, and I just never gave up.