Q&A: Ask a Non-Native ESL Teacher


hey guys it's lizzy here and i'm happy to welcome you at another ittttts live
stream uh if you don't know me yet i'm a non-native esl teacher
i also passed a tefl certification uh several years
ago and uh if you are here to learn a little bit more about uh tefl certification
uh and uh particularly how to be a non-native esl teacher uh
these days i'm here to help you out so feel free to ask me whatever um comes
to your mind whatever disturbs you maybe because i am that person who
is like 100 percent on your side i'm also a non-native esl teacher and um it
took me a while to overcome some challenges being a non-native teacher
so feel free to ask me anything by the way i have prepared
several questions from from our channel on youtube
so i'm gonna take those questions um to answer
but if you have anything on your mind feel free to ask me as well
and maybe this q a session will help you out to um understand better what is the
essence of tefl certification and at the same time to
make up your mind um upon maybe taking uh a tefl course
um also i'm not sure if you hear and see me clearly if something is wrong with my
video or audio feel free to let me know in the comments section
i hope that everything is smooth but if not please let me know
also uh don't be shy to let me know who you are where where you are from and so
on so um i will be really fascinated uh to find out something
about the audience uh so as for me for example i um i am located in ukaterenburg russia
it is uh right in the middle um i would say right in the
middle of this uh country and i live right next to the ural mountains so if
you know this area um you should probably um
understand um what i what i mean um but yeah let me know where
are you tuning in from uh so uh i guess that we are a
uh audience here um a multicultural uh you know um
community uh because at itt we have students from all over the world and i guess that
those who are on facebook and youtube watching uh this
live stream you are from uh different parts of the world so let me know where are you from
uh so i can see muhammad muhammad saying that he is from
pakistan that's awesome i guess that we have quite quite a similar time zone so it's 3
18 in my place right now 3 p.m uh and i guess that in pakistan it's
something around that time as well uh and there is also uh fauzan's
question so let me read it quickly and i hope i i will
help you out with the problem if you have any so being a non-native uh
with no experience i feel so intimidated of applying to online jobs so what would
you advise me about that uh i'm from algeria uh thanks for the question for uh fauzon
so uh i would say that um i used to be in your shoes
a couple of years ago so first of all i started teaching um as an in-class uh
tutor and um i i did face to face a lot
uh but um three years ago i decided to switch to
the online teaching mode and um at first it felt really awkward
i was not sure about my um online teaching skills
so my best decision was to take um you know not a freelance job
uh but i joined um an online school so um i found um
an online school that had um not that severe requirements you know uh many
online schools they they just ask you to provide uh with your certification
uh that was my case um sometimes they ask you uh to provide your diploma but
uh not necessarily in teaching as well or education so i've had um one in
linguistics uh and it was enough for that online school but they um
strongly um they they asked me to provide
at least a teaching certificate and i was really lucky to have my tefl
certificate that was enough for them um also sometimes they ask you to
provide some english level certificates uh when i started i have already had one i took
ielts in 2019 so i was also lucky uh to
have that certificate because it helped me a lot um what else
and as for my experience that was also not a problem so although um i wasn't
that skilled in online teaching yet they provided me the online school
provided me with their um guidelines uh with some
method methodological um
webinars and stuff so i could literally uh teach and study
myself uh being a teacher so it was really really helpful
um also if you are uh you know like 100 percent
uh not experienced uh if you are uh starting teaching right now
and you haven't done it before uh don't worry that you don't have that
experience try to gain um something right now try to learn more uh try to
study um something that is [Music]
that is in great demand these days for example um online teaching skills
that allow you to work with uh young children are in great demand uh and this is
something you uh would probably need to focus uh in as uh especially if
you want to work with children also try to research job prospects
there are different types of employers who provide
various options and who have various requirements uh just don't worry that you are
not experienced yet and moreover uh you can try to freelance and you can
try to provide english classes to your relatives to
to get some experience and you can try to
i don't know maybe to charge slightly less to get your first um
students that should be yeah that should be all right but my general advice is don't worry
and just go ahead and try to nail it
so well the recruiters these days don't have face-to-face communication this is uh
something i learned when i worked for that online school and
actually a little later when i wanted to find another online
school i found out that they completely um avoid organizing those face-to-face
communications they usually require request you to record a video of
you answering different questions related to teaching um to methodology and stuff to
your background experience as well not necessarily to your teaching experience
but just general interests and your
accomplishments maybe and that's it and that's how they analyze if you are a good fit for the
school and for possible um students so
um if you have uh at least this 120 hours tefl uh certification it should be
all right because basically you have some understanding of methodology and
you could apply uh these ideas that you learned from the tefl course uh when you
answer um recruiters questions or when you record that introductory video
that's it um so the question
this question is quite interesting uh how to gain confidence uh you know
um this is the same situation that i had um back in the day well approximately a
year ago or something when i started doing the these uh live streams for
itttt i felt really miserable speaking in front of people who are from all over
the world with different knowledge of english
and sometimes i also received negative comments like uh you speak badly or your
pronunciation is so unclear uh you have your russian accent and so on
um first at first i um
i worry it a lot but then my colleagues helped me to
overcome that situation and also um i started working on developing those
skills i joined a pronunciation course um on
the first place and you know most of those pronunciation courses these days um
have that confidence um module uh and uh coaches and teachers um sort
of help you out to um conquer this um
stress and nervousness when you speak in front of the public
so it is actually quite helpful so my advice would be
think about taking a pronunciation course also
there is this interesting app that is called elsa
this is also for pronunciation um and it helps you to um develop your standard
american pronunciation i think that these days american pronunciation
is considered to be very pleasant for english teachers
it's in great demand uh especially if you travel a lot uh because it's more
comprehensible compared to some other accents so uh think about um
yeah developing uh your pronunciation skills first and then you will um
gradually start um changing your behavior as well as a consequence
and another thing is that uh if you don't speak you won't actually conquer this
uh shyness and nervousness so the only
thing you can do for yourself and for your english speaking is to speak a lot
so um it should be all right just don't worry and uh try to work on yourself
also taking a general english course uh isn't a bad choice as well even if you
are an advanced english speaker i still actually
take english classes with a teacher and
right now i'm preparing for the cpe test uh so hopefully i will take cp um this
summer um so yeah maybe i will confirm my english proficiency
so taking english classes isn't a bad idea for
developing your speaking skills as well if you guys have any further questions
let me know now i'm going to see one of the questions from
youtube so there is this one could you please provide me with the location when i can
where i can take um the itt course uh in fez
so uh the person asked about uh the course location and this is something i
would like to teach you really quick uh so if you navigate to our um tefl website us you will see
that button that is called locations
so um on the courses um yeah actually it's not there
one second i will find it
so let me drop you a link right now
so if you navigate to this section
of the website it is the apply section there you will
be able to see um all possible variants uh of taking a
tefl course with itdtt and one of them is actually
called an in-class course so if you choose that option you will be able to see
all possible locations that are available these days
for taking an in-class course another option is called a combined
course it is when you have that um
course uh that consists of two different parts uh one part uh you do online
completely another one is uh done in class uh you can check out all possible
locations all available like locations um for that for that option as well
so uh if you want to do your chapel course uh in a real classroom
unfortunately there are um there is a limited number of uh
locations uh available these days due to the kovid restrictions so um just make
sure you go you navigate to that apply section and check out what is available
um in class these days um if you
don't mind uh taking an online course it would be actually
more reasonable these days because um basically you save up uh you don't
uh pay for the accommodation um for the teaching service itself
and so on you don't spend much money on living in a different place for example
and at the same time you can take an online course at your
own pace so you don't have to spend like let's say four weeks
without work without communicating with your family
and friends but you just spent like a couple of hours a week for
example and at your own pace you do this online course um i think it's more
beneficial from this perspective okay so
if you have any further questions feel free to ask
i guess i will stay here until the very last question but if there are not many
well maybe you guys understand everything quite
well about itt and tefl certification so um i will move on with the next
question from youtube uh so this one is quite interesting um
and quite controversial i would say so where to
find clients to teach english online uh basically i've already done several
videos uh several live streams uh devoted to online teaching
placements but generally speaking like quickly uh
from the top of my head you can do it on properly on italki so
you can find uh clients on those marketplaces for teachers
of course you should understand that there is this level of
competition because there are many other english teachers there
but don't don't worry because um such websites uh usually have some specific
algorithm and they help new teachers to connect
with [Music] new students uh based on students preferences and um
you know sometimes students feel really intimidated working
with non-native speakers um so this is when non-native speakers are
very helpful especially if um native speaker non-native speakers can
speak the same language as a student
speaks so uh for example in my case here in russia there are so many people um who
can't take uh classes with native speakers until they are
quite proficient until they are probably b2 or even c1
level so this is a great benefit for us as
non-native teachers if you don't wanna
work via those marketplaces there are two other options
uh first of all you can work for an online teaching school i have already dwell upon
this question um online teaching schools do not have
those strict requirements um oftentimes they are very
very you know shallow i would say um they they just ask you to provide
with at least this tefl certificate uh and also uh showcase that you have
this um a decent level of english that's it um
most of online teaching schools don't um require you to have
some specific diploma um they don't even care about
your bachelor's degree so um it's it's quite easy to find a job
in an online teaching school but my favorite option is to work
as a freelance teacher yes it is slightly more challenging
at the beginning but the more you promote yourself online
as a freelancer the faster you get your audience and your potential clients
what you have to do is to um create a profile on various social media
like instagram uh what what else uh maybe facebook uh tick
tock even it's actually flamboyant these days uh so tick tock is a great place to
reach your potential clients and start working on your
teaching appearance on your self presentation
yes uh it's it's quite challenging but it worth it so
yeah just think about um working as a freelance teacher that's actually so
awesome because you are in charge of your uh hourly rate um that the the number
you um tell your potential client is actually
on yourself so you can dictate everything
so yeah let's move on to the next question and don't forget that you can um
ask your questions in the comments section uh the questions that i show um on the
screen right now are from our youtube channel uh so there are actually plenty of them
um but if you right now watching this live stream and you have
something you know disturbing you uh in terms of online teaching or tefl
certification whatever don't be shy to ask
um okay what's next if i get a tesol certification can i
teach abroad well um the most obvious answer is yes
but there are some uh limitations um first of all i have to be frank with you
but you have to research yourself um i know that
uh when you take a table course well most of the students who come to take a tefl
course um at itt they expect that um the company will take everything for
them uh will will do everything and will provide with all particular details
but the thing is we are in charge of your tefl certification on the first place
uh your um career perspectives are like
99 on you uh and the more proactive you are
the faster you will get a job at whatever location you are willing to
get a job uh if you want to work in a particular country
abroad you should start researching that country even before taking a tefl
certification uh you should check out if you are um
if you are um eligible
uh to work um in that particular country if they allow for example non-native
speakers to be teachers in that area
for example several years ago when i decided to work in china
i didn't make that much of a research
but when i get when i got there i found out that
there were some specific limitation towards age nationality and stuff um in terms of
taking that um work visa so you have to research everything
yourself um that's okay to ask questions but it it would be more proactive uh if you
find some information online and it it really depends on on the place
where you want to work in okay
i guess that i am going to answer the last question right now and we will wrap
up and the question is actually uh quite um solid as well because it is related to
kovid and everything about kobe these days is really really
um in the center of attention so um how does it help to find a job in our kobe
times especially while not being native speakers so uh from my point of view
uh finding a job online
um or even not online but anywhere
around the world is um quite tricky so
you might be proactive but at the same time you might face many different limitations
as i have already mentioned sorry
but at the same time if you have a type of a tefl certificate
at least you can showcase that you have um the basic knowledge of methodology
and you are not uh someone from the street who says that they are
an english teacher because the certificate helps you to um
get some basic knowledge and also uh to provide
sorry uh to provide your students with
um higher quality of teaching that's my opinion
and for now uh for non-native teachers it is um vital
uh to show that uh we have we make progress over the years that we work uh
not only on our professional skills maybe but also on our english skills as
well so um taking just a tefl course isn't enough
uh you have to bear in mind that um after this tefl course you will probably um
have this cpd um what it is called constant teaching developing development
constant professional development so yeah
it is quite important uh to work on yourself but at the same time um native
speakers don't have that much of you know benefits advantages um
compared to non-native facile teachers because they also might be those people
who don't know how to teach english and if you think of your own language if
you think of your native language just imagine you are a native speaker but
can you actually explain how to use your own language to someone from a
different country for example i can't explain um
to other people to foreigners how to speak russian although i am a native
russian speaker so um you have to develop a skill
and tefl certification helps you to develop this basic skill
of teaching okay so that's probably it for today
uh that was quite a nice session and i hope to see you next week
still if you have any questions related to tefl certification online english teaching whatever feel
free to um ask uh in the comments under this video
uh on facebook or youtube um and yeah have a great day see you
next week guys bye bye