Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) involves teaching adults and children whose first or main language is not English. This can be done in the UK or abroad and the students may be learning English for either business or leisure reasons.
Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) is also a widely used term and often means the same thing as TEFL. It’s sometimes specifically used to refer to teaching English to people who are living in the UK but who do not speak English as a first language. These students are most commonly refugees and immigrants and need to learn the language in order to help them settle into UK society.
Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL) or teaching English as an additional language (TEAL) may also be terms that are used, but they generally all refer to the same thing – teaching English to someone whose native language is not English.
LEC ESL teachers use a range of course books and materials, plus a variety of audio-visual aids. A strong emphasis is placed on dialogue and role-playing, but more formal exercises, language games and literature are also used.
The content of lessons varies depending on the reason why the students are learning English, e.g. whether it’s for business use for adults, university work and so on. The aim of each lesson is to encourage the students to communicate with each other using the structures and vocabulary they’ve learned and to improve the four basic language skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing.
Typical tasks that may be carried out include:
– classroom management;
– planning, preparing and delivering lessons to a range of classes and age ranges;
– preparing and setting tests, examination papers and exercises;
– marking and providing appropriate feedback on oral and written work;
– devising, writing and producing new materials, including audio and visual resources;
– organising and getting involved in social and cultural activities such as competitions, school parties, dinners and excursions;
– attending and contributing to training sessions;
– participating in marketing events for the language school;
– preparing information for inspection visits and other quality assurance exercises;
– teaching on a one-to-one basis;
– basic administration, such as keeping student registers and attendance records.
Working hours vary considerably between 9am – 8pm, Monday – Friday and Saturdays, 9am – 12 noon and may include evening and weekend work. Teaching may be carried out after usual school hours to widen access. A considerable amount of time is also required to be spent on planning lessons, which may not be included in your normal working hours.
Short-term contracts are available and part-time and part-year work is possible.
What to expect
– All LEC teachers work on a self-employed contractual agreement of 12 months (January to December). Teaching English in the peak season in July and August. Summer courses usually provide excursions and social trips. Check contracts and school policies closely for details.
– Teachers are based in classrooms for the majority of the time but may be expected to take part in social activities, sometimes in the evenings and at weekends, especially on Summer courses.
– Self-employment and freelance work is common and many teachers can work on a contract for an alternative employer. Teachers may also be entitled to benefits, such as, working tax credits and housing benefit, however, check before you commit yourself.
– LEC teacher posts are hourly-paid contracts. Permanent posts are more difficult to find and therefore competition for these is high.
– Codes of dress and behaviour should be neat professional dress, but relaxed and show respect to all staff and students.
– Work is challenging and can be stressful due to factors such as under-resourcing and insecurity of contracts, as well as workload.
LEC is open to all graduates, but the following subjects are particularly useful:
– modern languages.
There are various qualifications that we accept and will expect you to hold one of them.
For entry level, the following are the most recognised:
– Certificate of English Language Teaching to Adults (CELTA), awarded by Cambridge ESOL;
– Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (CertTESOL), awarded by Trinity College London.
– DELTA (Diploma in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages)
As well as having a good command of English and the relevant qualifications, you will need to show evidence of the following:
– a friendly and confident manner;
– good planning and organisation skills;
– the ability to work under pressure;
– flexibility and an adaptable teaching style;
– creative skills and ideas for planning practical and interesting lessons;
– excellent spoken and written communication skills;
– effective listening skills;
– sensitivity, tolerance and patience.
Pre-entry experience, for example as a language assistant in a summer school, home tutor, or voluntary work abroad, is helpful and necessary for LEC teaching roles.
Liverpool English Centre is fully committed to being the best school we can possibly be. That means we will be growing steadily over the next few years and will be steadily hiring the best people we can find. We are looking for teachers with at least two years of experience and strong teaching skills.
We are especially looking for teachers with a strong desire to teach at the highest level possible. As a teacher run company, all teachers are expected to play a role in curriculum design and the running of the centre – if you have hit the glass ceiling at your current institute, you may want to join our team. If so, download, complete and return the LEC Teacher Application Form to us with a copy of your CV and a cover letter, outlining your skills and experience, to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Please note all applicants must provide a basic disclosure certificate and are subject to a background check before undertaking employment at LEC.