I'm normally pretty up to date with these blog things, however since passing my TEFL and getting a job, I have been super busy!
That's right you guessed it, I have been working as an English Foreign Language teacher now for 6 months! Time has flown by to say the least and I am well adapted to living in Thailand.
I got my first job in a private language company, which was an excellent way to get into the world of teaching as its quite relaxed and less formal. I taught all ages. My youngest student was 4 years old and my oldest student was 61! Therefore I taught all different kinds of levels!
The first day of my new job was probably the most daunting as my new lovely boss literally just threw me into a class and told me to get on with it! Talk about being thrown in the deep end??! Anyways, I actually managed to blag my whole way through. The kids had fun and I felt relieved when it was over! Slowly but surely after each lesson I developed my own teaching style which adapatble depending on the students needs and my confidence has grown since.
Sometimes I was asked to go to different corporations and companies and help teach their employees whether it be basic conversational English or advanced business English writing. Either way it was challenging and rewarding and I loved the different kinds of people I met in the process!
I decided that I wanted to fully do the teaching experience so I got a job in a government high school in Bangkok, Thailand. It's one of the top 5 government high schools in the whole of Thailand and teaches more than 3,000 students. I work with other Thai teachers in the Foreign Language department and I teach English as part of their Thai curriculum.
The job itself comes with so many responsibilities that it's no longer just about teaching the students. I am a form tutor, therefore I have my own class that I mentor and do the attendance register every day with. They come to me if they need anything or want to talk if it is about something and they have become like my little family. They're aged 15-16 so they're at the age where they can be a little bit cheeky but still know how to have a laugh in a mature way. They have become my friends and made me feel extremely welcome in the school. I take part in extra-curricular activities and I help students with tasks such as ICT work and even if a student has a question about something they saw or heard outside of the school, they're not afraid to ask me about it. They're such bright intelligent kids - it still blows me away!
The disadvantages of working full-time in a government high school is that I have to be there at 7:15am every morning Monday - Friday. That means getting up at 5am, therefore I am no longer the little party queen that I once was and I aim to be in bed for 10:30pm most evenings. Also the job is very draining and tiring and I come home from work sometimes and my feet are killing me and throbbing so much. However a good Thai massage soon sorts that out!
I will say one thing, being a teacher requires an extreme amount of organisation and patience. All your lesson plans need to be ready, you must review each student and if you have 20 classes with 50 students in each - it's a damn well big challenge! If you need worksheets photocopying and you need you over 1000 copies (which is the case sometimes as I teach so many students!) you need to give 3 days notice to the copy room so the staff there can have it ready in time! Therefore you need to know and have planned what you're doing very well in advance!
One of the sad things that I have noticed about EFL teachers is that so many decide to become an EFL teacher without actually thinking about what it all takes and amount of effort that is needed to be successful. I have unfortunately met many first-time teachers who have packed it in after such a short time because they can't handle the job or it's not how they thought it would be.
Basically what I'm trying to say is, just because you can speak English, does not mean that you will have what it takes to be a teacher! There is a hell of a lot more to it than that!
Anyways, becoming an EFL teacher was the best career move I ever did and I am extremely happy currently.
My apologies for the lack of posting, however I will try and get back into it more.