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This is how our TEFL graduates feel they have gained from their course, and how they plan to put into action what they learned:
Volunteer TeachingTeaching english as a Second Language as a volunteer teacher can be both challenging and rewarding and is an ideal way to launch an inexperienced teacher’s TEFL career. Utilizing what you’ve learned in the tefl certification course provides valuable insight to that experience giving the teacher an opportunity to employ their knowledge in the classroom. Volunteering as a TEFL instructor is very beneficial to a teacher’s career. Having no previous teaching experience helps the teacher overcome all fear and reservations of teaching a class; as well it makes the idea of teaching the english language so surreal. Working as a volunteer allows the instructor to teach, analyze, correct and perfect teaching styles, lesson planning according to student needs and interest and activities that’s been successful and those that were not in activating student learning. Discovering language barriers, reactions to learning the english language and the teachers style of teaching will reflect students understanding and comprehension in activities, homework and classroom participation. Volunteer teaching enables a new teacher to observe students experiencing difficulty with the new language, the different levels students are on and those who are stronger. Volunteering teaching opportunities should be experienced in the teacher’s home country in a multi-lingual environment. Why? It challenges the teacher as well as provides a better perspective of what the teacher will face especially when the student’s language(s) are foreign to the teacher. This way, the teacher is forced to teach and respond in english to the students with the expectancy of the students to respond the same. As the weeks progresses and the classes become more productive, the lessons become tailored and the teacher becomes less rigid and more comfortable in his/her teaching methods in the classroom. Therefore, students and teachers confidence grows each time they meet. Student progress is what builds teacher confidence; because you get to see the results of your teaching efforts come into fruition. Volunteer teaching can be used as practical training that executes TEFL language methodologies and its learning techniques in practice. Although, most volunteer teaching is unsupervised and unregulated. Due to that fact, the experience could be a leave room for teachers to make many mistakes and apply bad habits to their teaching methods. Which means the lesson structure and student progress are typically difficult to evaluate and could be ignored when applying for professional jobs at universities, language centers, and other educational institutions domestically or abroad. A teacher’s first experience as a volunteer ESL teacher should be in a regulated program with professional supervision. It provides professional development to the teachers, therefore providing an excellent learning experience and environment for students. That way, teachers have an entire support network and sufficient resources to excel in their teaching experience. Volunteer teaching in the united states and volunteer teaching abroad can provide a totally different teaching experience. Thus in the U.S. many resources are available to aid in a TEFL teachers professional development. Abroad a teacher’s skills, creative, and innovation will be the only resource they’ll have to rely upon, is when the teacher’s professional development skills kick in to propel student learning. Overall the volunteer teaching experience whether in the U.S. or abroad—living in their environment, learning their way of life and language(s) will allow any teacher to immerse themselves in the culture of his/her students—having a new level of respect for those cultures and languages making the experience priceless and invaluable.