TEFL Certification Course Diary: Jack’s third week
Jack’s TEFL certification course is now half-way complete. By the sounds of it, the course has been both challenging and rewarding. How did Week 3 turn out? Let’s see…
(If you missed Weeks 1 and 2, you can start here.)
What did you get up to over your second weekend on the TEFL course?
I volunteered to look after my friend’s cat while she was in Bangkok. This gave me the chance to review my grammar studies, as well as Netflix and chill.
Sounds like you settled into a routine by now; was the start of Week 3 any easier than the start of Week 2?
I felt far less overwhelmed with things compared to Week 1 and 2. The trick being that all the course resource packs are your best friends. Read them enough and you will know what to expect from lessons and how best to prepare.
Is English grammar starting to make more sense now, or does learning it seem like a hoop you have to jump through?
Yes, English grammar makes a lot more sense now. The weekend I spent going over the differences helped, however the classes where we again went over the tenses that we had previously learned helped to enforce the points.
You’re meant to have become a bit more independent with lesson planning. Do you feel that is the case?
Yes, the lesson planning sessions in Week 2 prepared me to be able to work more independently. It was difficult coming up with my own ideas for the different stages, but it went much better than my first ever lesson so I was happy.
What have you found to be the most interesting part of lesson design?
I found the different stages of the lessons very interesting. The most interesting part that each stage should have a different effect on the student. I worked as a gym instructor and it reminded me of the different stages of a workout. In my opinion the engage stage is much like a warm up, with the study stage being the workout and the activate being the warm down.
Are there any teaching skills you’ve found to be more challenging than others? If so, which skills?
I really struggled with time management. Being a slow writer, it would take ages for me to draft my board work. To deal with this I tried to draft as much of my board work as possible that wouldn’t give away my teaching points.
You had a lecture on TEFL jobs and job search strategies in Week 3. Do you feel more confident about your job prospects now?
This was very useful. I came to Phuket worrying that I may end up waiting for months for a job offer to come to me. However, I learned that there is a big market for teachers here and this really helped to put me at ease.
Where are you hoping to get a TEFL job after the course?
I received a job offer to teach English in Japan next year so that is one of my plans. However, this job will not start until April, which means for the meantime I will try and a TEFL job in Phuket for the next six months.
Did you find speaking with experienced teachers gave you insight into what it’ll be like to teach in a Thai classroom?
Yes, it gave me an understanding of the best ways to teach English to Thai students. My way of dealing with things may be very different with how a Thai teacher does, but I have to remember that my ways are not necessarily correct.
You’ve got your final teaching practice coming up for Monday of Week 4 and the final exam later next week. Any nerves with respect to finishing the course out?
Certainly. Even as I write this, I am nervously looking at different bottles of alcohol that would be a suitable bribe for the trainers…jokes aside, I am pretty nervous.
Any plans for your last weekend of the course?
Study, study, study and maybe study.
Read about how Jack did on his exams, how he did in his demo lesson, and if he was happy taking the course in TEFL Certification Course Diary: Week 4.
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