Sunday, December 12, 2010

Deciding in Which Country to Live and Work

Deciding which country you'd like to live and work in can potentially be a difficult task. However, if you want to work as an English teacher abroad, there are some hints that may help. Here are some guidelines to consider;

1. Select from the countries where there is at least a resonable demand for English teachers. However, don't make assumptions until you've done some research. For example, assuming that there would only be a big demand for English teachers in non- native English speaking countries is incorrect. The U.K. and the U.S. are in desperate need of English(ESL) teachers as a lot of foreigners arrive seeking work.

The biggest demands can be found in Asia but right now, the demand has increased exponentially and most parts of the world offer ESL posts.

2. Ask yourself what you hope to accomplish by living abroad in a given country as well as what you hope to contribute.

3. Consider the wage vs quality of life from region to region. While some countries will pay a lot of money, such as the United Arab Emirates, the cultural experience may not be as intense and as enriching as lets say southern Europe where you would have the opportunity to have real relationships with the locals but would gain much less income.

4. While it sounds superficial, climate is an important factor when considering whats best for you. I don't necessarily suggest that you should decide on a location because the climate is similar to what you're used to but be aware that in any part of the world, climate dictates culture, cuisine and general social norms. Its fine to chose a climatic region different from what you're used to as long as you are prepared to accept/embrace the new climate.

5. Research cultural and societal norms of the given region as this can also dictate how well you intergrate and enjoy your new host country.


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Friday, October 29, 2010

ESL Teaching in Antalya, Turkey

For some time Turkey has had a voracious demand for English teachers but its mostly been in Istanbul. Now, the demand has spread to the south. So along with more options for jobs, there are also beautiful beaches, an authentic fortified ancient city, friendly and hospitable locals as well as good nightlife. Antalya sits along the coast and enjoys over 300 days of sunshine with hot summers and mild winters.

Most ESL jobs can be found either in private English language schools or in universities. While its best to just show up and look for work, some universities will hire upon having only a phone interview.

I just returned from Antalya a couple of weeks ago and I still ask myself, why this beautiful city along the sea hasn't been discovered yet by native English speakers.

Come join us and have a look. G.G.

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Saturday, October 02, 2010

Your Communication Needs while Travelling in the Mediterranean

Now more than ever, its easier and easier to travel abroad and keep in touch. While taking a TEFL Course, you will definitely want to be connected in order to find English teaching jobs upon completion of the course.

However, you still need to be careful of which service you choose. For example, I hear that in the United States, you can buy an "international" phone before you actually leave the States. Don't do it. Its easy enough and ridiculously cheap enough to buy an inexpensive pay as you go phone once in Europe or even North Africa. When you leave you can either sell it to someone else or keep it as a souvenir.

For internet, if WIFI isn't secure enough for you, most countries in the region also sell pay as you go internet USB sticks with the same principle. The Mediterranean countries are highly adaptive when it comes to communicating so save your money and wait until you arrive. G.G.

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Tuesday, September 07, 2010

English Teaching Jobs

While taking your TEFL program, though it may be added work, you should be actively searching for an English teaching job. Don't wait until the end of your course to start looking. A good TEFL program should provide all of the tools to get started. A TESOL/TEFL Course's Job Program should include;

■ Advice for obtaining appropriate visas and contact information for relevant agencies to assist you.
■ Advice on preparing a CV/Resume and cover letter.
■ An open question and answer segment where trainees can get the information they need to get started on their job search.
■ Each trainee should receive individual and personalized guidance about setting up in the country of their choice from a staff member.
■ Trainees should be informed of what to expect in a job interview.
■ Lists of contacts of English language schools should be provided for the desired region.

While TEFL programs in the western world cannot realistically guarantee jobs after completion of the course, you should have the tools you need to get started. But remember, its ultimately up to you to take those tools and go after the job.


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Wednesday, August 11, 2010

A Good Side Effect to Taking a TEFL Course in Classroom

One great thing about taking a TEFL Course in the country where you want to work, which isnt really addressed, is that during the course, you get to meet interesting people. Yes, of course, you'll have your fellow trainees but I'm refering to the people you will teach during teacher practice.

As every accredited TEFL program must provide teacher practice, most often your students are natives of the country where you want to live and they are, infact, proud of their culture and history. It is an awesome environment to meet such people and learn more about your desired country from "real" people as opposed to magazines or stereotypes. It's a unique situation to see how different we are from each other as well as share our opinions of the world, our world.

What an opportunity! G.G.

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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

ESL Job Support

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Wednesday, July 14, 2010

TEFL Nice - Cannes

Due to popular demand for its TEFL program in Nice, The Language House now has an annex location in Cannes. Cannes is a 40 minute train ride from Nice and is near all the beauty that is the French Riviera. Right now the demand for ESL teachers is increasing rapidly in the PACA (Provence Alpes Maritimes Cote d'Azur) region. Between the university system and Sophia Antipolis, The Language House graduates are finding work soon after the course finishes. The next biggest hiring time is late September/October so come and join us just in time for interviewing. What's stopping you from living the life you've always wanted in the South of France?

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Sunday, June 13, 2010

Best Hiring Times for ESL Teachers

The best hiring times for English teachers looking for work in Mediterranean countries is towards the end of September. Often English language schools must wait to see how many students sign up after summer vacation before they commit to hiring teachers. The next hiring period which is more modest is in January. The second largest is in March/April. As September is approaching, the best time in the near future to take a TEFL course would be logically, August and September. Right now, we are offering some special deals to get you on the right track for success as an English teacher abroad. Come and Join Us!


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Friday, June 04, 2010

Nice, France TEFL Certificate

There are some great reasons to come to Nice, France to get TEFL Certified and start teaching English.

1. The demand for English teaching in this region is increasing rapidly. This is the case for the university system as well as private English language schools and Sophia Antipolis, a major office park near Nice.

2. There is an even higher demand for Business English where an English teacher can earn more money.

3. While Nice is touristic, its touristic for a reason. Nice and the rest of the Cote d'Azur is drop dead gorgeous. From the sea to the mountains (yes mountains) there are endless things to see and do. From wine tasting to hiking to water sports to fantastic nightlife. Nice has it all.

4. Nice is in close proximity to other beautiful cities and regions where one can visit. Places such as Cannes, Monte Carlo, Grasse, St Paul de Vence, Eze Village and St Tropez. Not mention the fact that Nice's international airport makes it easy to reach from just about anywhere.

5. Our trainers at the Nice center are able to provide job advice and assistance for all areas in the Mediterranean so even if you're not planning to stay in Nice, you can still be set on the right path to finding the English teaching post you want in the Mediterranean country you want. You also have access to our graduate- only website which provides updated information on finding jobs all over the Mediterranean.

6. No matter where your travels may take you after the course, our center also provides language instruction in French, Italian (Nice is very close to the Italian border), Spanish and Arabic. This training can take place either before or after the TEFL Course.

7. Our course provides invaluable teaching practice with local students which ensures success when attaining your English teaching post abroad.

8. The Nice center is located in the center of Nice and accomodations are always near the school so you won't miss out on local festivals, activities, nightlife and of course an easy walk to the beach.

9. The locals or rather the "Nicois" are very down to earth and friendly which makes time spent outside of classes enjoyable.

10. As Nice benefits from a microclimate, no matter when you decide to take the course, the weather will be mild, there will be sun and,of course, the sea will always be a beautiful azur blue.

So what's stopping you from coming over to do the TEFL Course in Nice, France?

Come and join us!


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Sunday, May 23, 2010

TEFL Jobs in Europe

Despite the economic crisis, there is a steady recovery in the ESL jobs sector. Combine that with the fall of the euro against the pound and the dollar and you have good conditions for arriving to Europe and finding an English teaching job.

If your ideal location is the Mediterranean, southern France and Italy have an increasing demand for English teachers with no signs of reaching a plateau. The best plan of attack is to get TEFL Certified in the region/country where you'd like to live and stay on afterwards to look for work. September is the best time to look for ESL jobs in this part of the world so taking a July or August course is ideal in order to hit the ground running.

Visit our site at to discover all of our available services to get started on your dream of living abroad.


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Sunday, May 09, 2010

Preparing for Your Move Abroad

So you feel ready to move abroad. Now what? Before you quit your job and show up in your desired country, consider a few essentials that will help you with a smooth move abroad.

1. Save, save and save some more. Consider this, even if you moved just to a different region of your home country, it would cost money would'nt it? So why think that moving to a different country would be any different? You will need money for many different start up costs when you arrive to the country of your choice. Save as much money as possible before you quit your day job.

2. Do the research on the country where you want to live. Find out the job market, cost of living, housing options and overall economic climate.

3. If you are a native or near native English speaker, take a TEFL Course in the country of your choice. That gives you time to take a close look at the region where you want to live and get job advice. Its also a great time to network.

4. Re vamp your CV before you arrive so you can hit the ground running once you arrive.

5. In almost all parts of the world, there's no longer a need to close your bank account in your home country. Anywhere you travel you should be able to access your money. Never carry a large wad of cash on you.

6. Try to pack light. Moving abroad means being flexible and you never know what opportunity may arise. In most parts of the world you can buy most things that you may need. And for those things you can't find....well, its time to adapt.

7. Lastly, travel with an open mind. If you are in search of a replica of home then you've misled yourself. The idea of travel is to find and appreciate the differences amongst us, amongst countries and cultures.

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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Why should Degreed Teachers take the TEFL Certificate Course?

I often get emails from experienced teachers, who have teaching degrees in the U.S. or England, who ask if its really necessary for them to become TEFL Certified.

While I think its very rational to assume that if one has a teaching degree and often substantial teaching experience then those qualifications/ experiences should be sufficient to find work as an ESL teacher, that is often not the case when planning to teach abroad.

So my response is yes, although unfair, you still need a TEFL Certificate and here's why;

1. Many countries do not recognize foreign degrees. Therefore, any degree acheived outside of the country of your choice is not considered even if it's relevant to the job you are applying for.

2. Even if you are an experienced teacher, teaching English to people who DON'T speak English provides challenges that even the most qualified teacher has not encountered before.

3. While the TESOL course is first and foremost designed to teach English speakers how to teach English in non-native English speaking countries, it is also a great opportunity to learn about the culture of the country. Subjects such as intergrating, cultural differences and challenges living abroad are discussed. Items relating to culture should not be ignored when considering living and working abroad and a good TEFL course provides this as well.

4. ESL is different from other subjects even if one has taught English to foreigners in their home country. In an English speaking country, students are of all nationalities as opposed to a country like France or Italy where almost all the students share the same first language. The methods are different.

Finally, in almost every course, I have at least one experienced teacher on the program and usually they are the ones who are the most excited about the new techniques and fresh ideas they've learned. There's always room to learn more. G.G.

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Sunday, March 28, 2010

What to Expect on a TEFL Course

Its hard to know what exactly one can expect on any given TEFL course around the world. Will there be a lot of work? Will I have time to have some fun on the weekends? How much homework will there be? Consider this, if you have never taught English and the goal is to start work as an ESL teacher right after the course then, yes, its safe to assume that there should be a reasonable amount of work.

So here's a run down of the minimum of what you can expect;

Grammar sessions
Phonology sessions
Teaching techniques- how to teach English to people who do not speak English
Teacher Practice- This is the cornerstone to any TESOL,TEFL or CELTA course. There must be a minimum of 6 hours of observed teaching practice. When trainees do not teach, they must observe each other.
At least one written report
At least two tests to measure mastery of Grammar and Phonology

Four weeks is a rather short period of time to turn non-teachers into teachers, therefore every minute of the course counts. My advice is to show up prepared to work and have an open, positive attitude. An open and positive attitude is the first prerequisite to living abroad as an English teacher well.

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Sunday, March 14, 2010

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Teach Abroad as an English Language Assistant

Before commiting to a undetermined stay abroad, why not try a short term internship in the country of your choice first. Doing a rehearsal trip first is a logical strategy which allows the traveller to discover the country, decide where in the country is best for them to live as well discover the culture and establish potentially helpful contacts for the return trip. It's also a less intimidating project than to plan to move abroad, never to return.

Now more than ever, there are many programs world wide which offer such an opportunity but are very expensive. Don't fall for such promotions. While processing time, housing and necessary training are some of the items that carry a legitimate price tag for participation, spending thousands of dollars/euros per week is not justified.

Whatever your interests, do your internet research carefully before signing on with an outfit.

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Monday, February 22, 2010

Teaching Business English Abroad

A great niche for English teachers is to teach Business English. If you've been avoiding this segment of the TEFL umbrella because you find it intimidating or perhaps boring, you are depriving yourself of a major source of income. I should also say that Business English doesnt have to be boring. Many people think that teaching business English involves charts, graphs and other tedious tools but it doesn't have to be that way.

In fact, as your clients already know their job and usually speak intermediate English, often they are looking for conversation lessons that might be found in a business setting. Also as many travel abroad for business they have questions that concern the local culture more than that of grammar.

Just calling an English lesson, "a business English lesson" entitles you to charge about 20% to 40% more per hour and many business English students are in search of one to one, private lessons. What could be better? To put yourself out on the business English market doesn't require much more than a TEFL Certificate. However, to get real results, meaning a string of clients, you will need some experience and usually a certificate of Teaching Business English.


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Saturday, February 13, 2010

Teaching English in E.U. Countries

Teaching English in an E.U. Country without an E.U. Passport is challenging. However it can be done. As of late, I've been receiving a lot of emails on the subject so I thought I'd offer a few thoughts. First of all, for Australians and Canadians, its possible to work abroad in countries like France and Italy for up to one year on the "Working Holiday Visa" exchange program. This program doesn't exists for Americans and on a side note, I'd like to urge Americans to write to their state senators about implementing a similar program if indeed you'd like to have such an option available to you.

For Americans, there are a few options which, depending on the EU country in question, may vary.

1. You can show up, find an ESL job, then go back to the U.S. and take care of the paperwork. Not a popular option for folks as its expensive and risky. The average school won't want to get involved in arranging such paperwork in the first place. However, if you have a university degree and a TEFL certificate, you can apply at the university level, where they are prepared to do just that to get native English teachers.

2. You can apply to become an English Teaching Assistant before you leave home. This is a government offered program and the paperwork can be arranged.

3. Registering for internships is another way to arrange long term work contracts in Europe.

4. While this item has been disputed, if you register for language lessons in the country of your choice for 6 months or more, either with a private language school or university, you'll be issued a student visa which allows about 15 hours per week of work. Although if your interest is only to work and not take advantage of the language and cultural aspect, its possible that you may not be granted said visa. The idea is that your primary goal is to be a student abroad.

A more discreet piece of advice is that no matter what your nationality, in some European countries things may not come to you as quickly as you expect so its essential to have patience when attempting to live in this part of the world. Occasionally take your eye off the end goal and remember why you want to live in that particular country in the first place. Often doing that can lead you in the very direction where you want to go.


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Tuesday, February 02, 2010

ESL Job Search Part II

One thing that may not be so obvious when looking for work in countries like France, Spain and Italy (southern Europe in general)is that inorder to succeed, one must network. One must take an interest in the local people and talk to them. Through just simple talking and taking a sincere interest in others, you can actually talk your way into a job or help finding a job or housing.

So often, people come to this part of the world so focused on just "finding a job" that they don't even pay attention to the things that make them want to live in said country in the first place. They ignore the culture and the people while maintaining their attention solely on what they want out of the situation. And often these people fail miserably because in southern Europe, its hard to have much without help from the locals. When you have developed real friends and relationships, that alone takes you much farther than any other skill you may have.

My advice is, of course, during your TEFL course you should work dilligently to secue employment but along the way, take time to get to know others and even help out. Its all about the process, not necessarily the final result. GG

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Sunday, January 24, 2010

The ESL Job Search Part I

So you've completed your TEFL Certification, what's next? In the beginning of one of our TESOL courses, I often see that frightened look in the eyes of some TEFL trainees. "What's my next move when the course is completed? Where do I go?" The first move is NOT to wait until the program is finished to start looking for an ESL job. Even though a proper TEFL Certification course requires a lot of work, this is not the time to put things off.

1. Before taking the TESOL course have a recent CV/resume ready to show your course trainers for review/proofreading before sending it out.

2.If you are taking the certificate program in the country or region where you want to work, which is recommended, then ask your course provider for local contacts in the desired city or region.

3. When sending off the CV, be sure to note in the cover letter where you are currently and when exactly you'll be available for interviews. If you leave things too vague, you may not be contacted.

4. In the meantime, if you are not in the city where you want to work, plan the logistics for being there at the time period you specified on your cover letter. So, for example, if you are taking our TEFL course in Montpellier but you want to work in Aix en Provence, plan to spend 3-4 days there, lining up all interviews in that time frame you mentioned in the cover letter.

5. After about one week, its fine to do a follow-up phone call to confirm that your CV has been received but also ask if they are hiring presently, do they know of other companies that may be. It never hurts to ask questions to get a feel for the current market.

6. Its never too early to start thinking about housing. If you don't already have housing arranged, obviously do an internet search but know that in Europe, there are a lot of websites that are geared towards people just like yourself who are looking for a room. If you want a big city, I suggest sharing an apartment (with your own room) because once there, you'll have plenty of time to find you own place, one that's right for you, without being pressured into to taking something you really don't want.

A final thought, I know the idea of picking up roots and starting fresh in a new country can be scary...especially with limited income. However, my best advice would be to plan as if you will, without a doubt, find a job. So if you believe, without a doubt, that you'll find a job, plan accordingly. If you do this with conviction, the rest will follow. GG

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