TEFL Q&A With a Non-Native ESL Teacher


hey there it's liza here how are you doing guys um i'm super glad
to welcome you to today's live session and i should say it's an unusual time
for me to start my live stream uh however from now on we're going to go
live uh on different days at different time uh just to make sure that we can uh
help out as many people as it is possible and there are some
people who can't make it on my regular day and at my regular time so that is why
i'm here today uh it's actually 10 am at my place
and i should say it's just the best way to start my um day my work day because um
i can meet this um interesting people who are motivated and um
proactive to change their career or i don't know like
develop careers so i'm super glad to be here and if you see and hear me please let me
know via the chat box so uh so that i could uh understand that there are some of you
watching um and today's live stream is going to be really really brief and simple uh we're
just going to discuss whatever questions you have on your mind
uh so um if you have any questions related to tefl
tesol life abroad for example or i don't know online education
please let me know uh early during this session and i will try my best to help you out
uh because this is why i am here for okay so um as you know um
or as probably uh there are not many people who um see me regularly so let me just
quickly introduce myself uh my name is lisa and i am from russia
uh i'm on i'm an online esl teacher and um i am also an
itt tefl and t soul expert uh so i'm here uh every week
uh to help you out um to um um understand like
uh if you are doing good at your career path uh or some something related to tefl
and t soul uh so guys if you have any questions please feel free to
comment um and also let me know where are you guys from so uh i'm located uh in yekaterinburg
uh it is the euro region of russia and uh today um
is pretty early for me to start this live stream i usually go um online around 2 p.m
but we just decided to change the schedule and go live on different days so that
we could help as many people as it is possible so that is why i'm here today and right
now so feel free to ask whatever questions are on your mind uh i will try my best
to help you okay and uh just a quick reminder uh this
live stream uh is uh supported by and provided by itt
and we are a leading tefl and tesol provider if you are interested
i in taking your um teaching career to um the next level
um tefl or tesol certification is actually what you need and uh this is
what happened to me several years ago when i was a graduate
and i wanted to change my career somehow so i i was a linguist
after my university but then i just realized that um that job that academic field was not
for me so i took this tefl certification and then i went to china to work um
as a as an esl teacher and this is actually how i started my
esl career so let me know where are you guys from um what is your um
career goal uh why are you interested in tefl feel free to comment out and i hope that
you have any questions because because otherwise we just don't have this talk and i am
simply speaking to myself and basically this is how it works right now i'm
talking to myself uh i can't see any other faces
behind the screen and it would be really helpful um if you talk to me um i i would
really appreciate that okay so um there is paula from
chile okay nice to see you paula thank you thank you for coming and there
is actually another um a question so let me just show it on the screen and answer it
so i hope that i pronounce your name correctly uh povana thank you so much for your
question and um so the question is related to my
personal experience in getting my first job um in getting my first
um esl job and i should say uh it didn't took uh it didn't take um
a long time back in 2016. so as i have already mentioned i was
a graduate a recent graduate i just finished my university
at that time and i was like um what what do i have to do what what
should i do for my career what should i do um to make a living you know
and at that time one of my schoolmates she found this
opportunity in china and she went there um a little bit earlier
um apart from me uh a little bit earlier than me
and um she we we constantly chatted uh on social media and she was like
um you know actually um you can also come to china uh it's not difficult um and there is
this demand and i was really interested in in this perspective and decided to
research a little bit because you know there were many
issues apart from just getting this plane ticket and going there
so i had to understand uh what was the situation with uh visa
with work visa and so on and um i was actually pretty young at that
time i was just 21. and i was a little bit scared
um so um on the um at first i just did that research
and then um i went to china and um to be frank i went to china with
my business visa so i couldn't get um a work visa just
because of several uh issues uh like my young age and
uh what else um and the this um long process of getting um
the work visa uh so i went um as a business visa holder and started
working um as an esl teacher in a kindergarten but i kind of
knew that it was pretty illegal um it was actually really illegal
and um i constantly tried to um research how to change the situation
but at that time i just couldn't do anything um and one of the major problems
was my age um i um don't know about the situation with
visas in china now like um how to get them how to apply you know
this kind of process however um i did um a live stream
uh with my friend who is um still there and he talked um
there about the process of uh getting a job in china uh post covid
situation uh so what you have to know about working abroad uh working
abroad as an a um as a non-native teacher is that um
every country has different legal situations they have different requirements and if
you're interested in a specific place in a specific location
before um finding a job there research that country research their
governmental websites for example uh just to get this understanding of
of the process you um you will be supposed to uh come through
you know um even if countries have some um easy uh visa
application process it is extremely important uh to uh find
all possible um pitfalls you know uh so
um generally speaking uh it it was not difficult to find a job
uh in 2016 uh and it is not that difficult to find a
job abroad these days although there is still
some covet going around the world and
some countries still have restrictions some others do not have them well
anyways the demand is still here and it is actually possible um to find a job
even if you are at the early stage of your career okay
so um fuvana thank you for the question again and i hope that um i have
um explained my situation um like in details more or less
but if you have any other questions just feel free to ask and let me um move on to
the next question all right so there are some people who actually know me
thank you so much for coming uh latron um nice to see you
uh and yeah some people from saudi arabia um turkey
right okay that's actually really cool to know that we're guys
global and we have this awesome esl community here thank you so much for tuning in and
let's answer this question all right this is a funny question um thank you so
much latifa um so as long as
i have been working as an online teacher and mostly i work with one-on-one
students and my groups are
made of adults you know um i don't work with young children any longer um it's it's really hard to
answer this question but i would try so um when when i worked in china
i had to deal with um for at first it was a class of 30 children or so
and they were um from five to six years
it was extremely challenging for a person who doesn't know their
local language and who doesn't know how to teach in
general because like you know no experience no knowledge of child psychology and so on so it was
really uh difficult to figure out how to work with those people but
what i noticed um early um back back in the day
was that uh if you want uh children to be attentive and patient and
quiet during your circle time uh you have to become their role model
um if they don't see um that you are a professional uh somehow
you know they they like feel it um if you don't show um confidence
uh in the classroom they uh they will simply ignore you
so um it is extremely important to um set this connection
and to help children understand that you are
not the same age as they are and you are a an adult and they have to respect you
but to do that um it's it's a long pass
which you have to set yourself and follow your own
instinct probably so for example i um i
acted in different situations uh not that well enough and some
children they um kept ignoring me they kept being naughty and you know so
uh when there are many people around it's just uh impossible to be liked by everyone
like for sure um but at least some people will respect you and
this is probably the most crucial aspect of teaching um so maybe it's a great idea
um not to uh pay attention to some uh misbehaving situations and
just pay attention to some rules and directions but you have to set
all of those rules um just at the beginning of your work in
in the specific classroom okay all right uh there is joanna from
missouri uh us nice to um nice to see you joanna thanks for coming
okay [Music] all right so um i am
i'm super glad to see that uh people who have recently graduated from the
course um also want to stay connected to the community
and by the way thank you guys for coming um yeah as for
building this esl community let me just introduce my um
my group on facebook so if you are uh interested to keep in touch and if
you want to network with some other teachers just um feel
welcomed to join my facebook group for esl teachers i have just sent it
uh to the chat box uh so i hope to see you uh sometime um
so um i also try to from time to time i try to share
useful stuff there but you know my uh work schedule is pretty hectic um so i'm not that
consistent however i try my best to
come up with an idea um with several ideas for that group so um i will try to um
post uh regularly uh and if you guys want to keep in touch you
can always um add me on facebook as a friend or um just join in the group
um and we can chat uh when you have any questions okay um
yeah and as for um the thing related to job opportunities uh we at
itt uh just let me quickly send my um
send another link to the chat box um
yeah one second please i haven't prepared for that sorry
uh so at itt we have a section um we have a separate section on the
website which is related to jobs and we keep this resource updated constantly
and add um and add different uh job prospects
from our partners so if you guys are interested in finding um a tefl job um
an esl position just feel free to check out this job section
uh on the itt website um and you will probably um
find something uh you are looking for and also another and another
important fact um um at at our uh t-cell tefl uh
courses um facebook page we also post uh different job prospects
um regularly so just make sure you stay on the group and make sure you
subscribe to the news so if you need any updates uh
on um job prospects on positions uh you will be able to see
uh the new ones uh when they um come up on facebook okay
all right and the next question from salamat uh i can read this
uh kirilik um caption so um nice to see you by the way thanks
for coming to the live stream and i'll try my best to answer your question as well
right now and by the way um salamat is from uzbekistan and
as far as i know it's a great destination to work as an esl teacher so
if you're interested in not only some famous and popular directions
just think about uzbekistan i think it's a great place to visit
at least and my end last year she spent there like a couple
of months because uh she has some work related to
uh that destination she's not a teacher but um anyway she loved the country
and she she said like um it's a direction um which worth visiting
okay um yeah so um as for working abroad
after finishing your tefl or tesol certification uh the answer is yes um right after
you get certified uh you are allowed uh to teach at whatever place
you want however the thing is you have to be proactive in finding
a job yourself at idt we have um a post course
uh job assistance uh which is um full like for good if you uh want
any assistance at whatever stage of your life you are you can simply message
us on facebook or write an email and our managers um will
try to assist you uh but don't count on um this help
solely because um anyways you have to be proactive yourself this is the way we
actually find jobs um being a profession
being professionals and if you really want to become an esl
teacher especially abroad it's just probably 99 on you and then
another percent on some help and on employers you know
so this is how it's done in the world um what else should i add here
let me think that's probably it so um i also wanted to add
about online jobs uh actually um just counting
just thinking of the current situation with all those covered restrictions
before going abroad probably it's a great idea to get some online teaching
experience online teaching is in great demand
nowadays you can also make good money uh doing um online teaching
and it's just much easier to start working online versus going somewhere abroad just
because you will avoid those um legal issues and um visa application
process and so on so um right what what i would suggest is
uh right after your tefl certification or even before slightly before uh
getting tefl certified uh make up your um profile on prepley
or italki for example or on some other tefl not temple on some other
teaching platforms and try to get this experience as early as it is possible because
teaching online is also a great way to learn how to apply methodologies
uh how to manage classrooms and so on so
i strongly recommend that um and also just to just just a quick
reminder um i did um several online streams
several live streams related to uh different teaching platforms
related to online teaching so if this topic is interesting to you make
sure you check out our folder on the facebook group related to
live streams or you can also check out our folder on youtube
so we have a youtube channel just for those who doesn't know for those who don't know
yeah just check out those previous live streams and you will find you you can find
uh interesting ideas for your future um jobs for your future experiences
yeah that's it um and just let me know if you want um a link if you if you need
this direct link to the resources um let me know i'll quickly find it on the facebook group um
or on youtube probably youtube would be easier but not sure
okay and now just let me see another question all right
i can see that there are so many people from india today and from countries uh you know close to
russia uh that's probably because we have um the same time zone and are you guys free now
is it convenient for you to join in this live streams during these hours
let me know as well because i try to figure out which is uh what is the best time to go
live um because i want to meet some more people from different places
and to help out as much as it is possible so if you think that it is better to
go live earlier um in the day just let me know i'll try my best but
frankly speaking um i um i personally can't get up really early so probably 10 a.m
is the most suitable time for me um to go live okay um so there is another question
from povana i am by the way thank you so much for being this active i really appreciate your interest
okay um
so um as for the thing about securing a position uh i believe that it is
possible this is actually how it's done um for example just let me
uh explain um the uh this visa application process in china
i know about this process uh from from my previous experience although i
couldn't apply myself you know because of those things uh however
the thing is uh when an employer considers a specific teacher they start
preparing documents for their work visa beforehand so before
this person comes to the country when they come to the country
they have not a work visa but some specific document
which allows them uh to stay uh in the country before getting this work
visa and when it is all done uh when some other documents are done
related to this work visa process this person
gets the documents and just changes the permit the initial permit to this
work visa so um if um you started um discussing
all these details uh with an employer and they say like yes uh let's
uh let's uh sign this contract and they start preparing documents
specifically for you um your position is secured
no one else uh will take it just simply because uh the employer
spends money on um processing your documents
and they don't want to lose you you know they want to make sure
that all of the documents will be ready um and you will come to the
country as as they wish of course
sometimes things happen and this process goes slowly for example
or some issues occur like you have to get some more documents
or you have to wait a little bit longer and so on you have to get some
confirmations and stuff like that but generally speaking uh you get your
work visa when you come to the country and um before coming to the country
before getting this work visa you have a permit a residence permit or some
something like that and you have to change it when you uh come to the place okay
yeah yeah uh so thank you so much for paying attention
to my uh recommendations yes we have different um by the way linda's live streams are
also saved on those folders on on the facebook group and
on the youtube channel so if you want uh to check out if there are some topics
covered um which which might be interesting to you make sure you um check out those videos
yeah so
yeah so um yeah thank you so much for letting me know that this time is
convenient for you so probably i should um make it
fixed maybe i should write it like just fix it in my schedule and go
live either at this time or at my regular time um like i can change
each week because i can see that today's session is pretty active
all right thank you pubana that is actually so awesome that there are people from malaysia as well
i i love malaysia um i went to malaysia uh in 2018
and i spent um i actually went to malaysia twice
first i went to uh kuala lumpur and then to penang and those places
were just awesome but i would love to travel around the country a little bit more
unfortunately i didn't have a chance to to do that at that time
because they had just like weekend trips uh but still i think that it's a great
country to live in it's a great country to visit so and i was so impressed that uh people
speak um english there that people are um you know
like uh international citizens that was really impressive and i also
loved uh bookstores in in malaysia because there are so many different
books in english compared to russia for example it's just
a gold mine you know when you go to a bookstore uh here in russia it's it's hard to find
um books in english especially if you are interested in some specific topics for business or
i don't know maybe finance some something like that but in malaysia it's extremely different
you can find whatever you want so i strongly recommend malaysia as one of
the um teaching destination destinations as well so i believe that it's a great place
uh so guys if you have any further questions related to toefl t soul work abroad
um and so on online teaching please feel free to ask me
um well anyways otherwise uh we can actually finish and
wrap up this session um we've been here for 35 minutes already
and it it was a great talk unfortunately
it's not possible to communicate face to face i would prefer that i should say because
it's always much more pleasant to speak to someone in person
um anyway thank you so much for asking questions um
all right so uh if you uh choose between um 220 hours
and 120 hours courses i would say that it depends on your
experience uh if you have already worked as a teacher and if you know
some basic methodologies i would probably go for 220 hours
instead of 120 hours because 120 is just a really basic
um course uh which consists of um some basic methodologies
and the most basic principles of teaching grammar for
example vocabulary and so on um some some basic uh instructions
uh for managing classrooms so it's probably um the initial
level uh to get if you are at the early stage of your english
teaching career but if you know um some [Music]
some at least some things about teaching i would probably go for a longer course
all right um and by the way um as for me for example um i did 120
hours in 2017 um or in 2016. yeah i i
don't actually remember because it was so long ago uh but uh now i'm taking
um a diploma course uh with itttt as well because i just realized that
um i leveled up somehow myself uh doing this teaching job
on a regular basis and getting experience practically however i i still feel like
i'm lacking some academic knowledge that is why i chose a diploma course which is probably
307 hours i i don't remember actually let me check that out
and it is super convenient to do um whatever courses online
yeah so if you are also interested in longer courses which
contain more information and more academic knowledge
probably uh you can consider our diploma course diploma certification
uh it's 370 hours okay um all right
all right yeah uh so as for classroom experience um i i totally understand you
but the thing is you have to find this classroom experience yourself
however we actually have um
let me just check it quickly
we actually have an observed teaching practice let me just check it out on the website
probably it's not yet on the website i have to check that out after the live stream uh but
we actually have this observed teaching practice which can be bought apart from the main course
and you can practice teaching either in a real classroom or online
but you have to choose between these two options because you know
the settings are just different [Music]
all right uh well um as for me
uh how to secure a job how to get a job uh even online is to
start practicing as early as it is possible um how can you do that you can try to
volunteer there are some organizations where you can volunteer where you can teach
voluntarily on the first place what else
you can also start giving classes for a little fee
so don't charge like a professional teacher just set some reasonable price
which you think is the most suitable to your experience and work with those people
who are really interested in learning english around you they can be your
relatives your friends um maybe some people from your network as well uh just
don't be afraid to say everybody that you are a teacher and actually
i started my um my instagram blog uh several weeks ago
um and uh i was so impressed to find out that many people are really interested
and in my experience and they um right after they
get to know me they want to have classes with with me as well
um so uh probably it's a great idea to try um to advertise yourself uh
using social networks and even if you don't have this
experience you can also try online teaching platforms
because you don't have to be a professional teacher as far as i remember to work for some
uh teaching platforms but just check out platforms
yourself because there are so many of them some platforms like italki for example has specific
requirements related to education and professional experience
but some some others like let me think cafe talk there is
such a platform called cafe talk they don't require any experience or some even special
education so try to start getting as much experience
as it is possible uh trying different resources trying different places
that's that's it yeah this is how it's done
[Music] so as for me it's really hard to say right now which countries
accept non-native teachers legally just simply because they all have different requirements
sometimes they change the requirements and if you are interested in a specific
location what you have to do is to google them to check
out their governmental resources where they put this information about
employees so about this employment um in in the
country of your destination in the country of your choice uh but
just [Music] um i feel like uh it is legal for sure
to work in thailand it might have already changed as well i'm not sure but when i stayed in
thailand in 2019 it was actually legal to work as a teacher there
there are not not all countries allow you to work
as an english teacher if you are not from um some native speaking countries but there
are some so it's actually possible to find a job but again you have to research you have
to be proactive okay all right guys so
i'm so sorry i feel like my voice uh has started uh changing a little bit because um i've
been speaking for 45 minutes um without interruptions
uh so if you have any further questions just let me know quickly otherwise we can
finish today's session i think that it was really active today
um usually um people are not that communicative you know i'm not that talkative and i
always appreciate your activity i like to keep in touch after those
sessions i actually found so many um
so many people with the same mindset as myself thanks to these live streams and
if you want to keep in touch with myself or if you want to find some other people
interested in um english and um efl teaching
just feel free to join my facebook group um yeah i try to be helpful there as
well so if you have any questions any further questions after this session
just yeah just dm me um or what else or uh may
write a message on the facebook group and i'll try my best to assist you
okay so i believe that is all for today thanks for coming to the session um
it was really really uh informative i hope and um it was nice to talk to you guys
um and that's probably one of the best ways to start
to start my work day i have already communicated with nice people
motivated people so it's a way to start for sure
so thanks a lot for coming and see you next week next week i'm going to
present a different topic related probably to
materials or something like that so i hope to see you next week and stay tuned bye bye guys