Einstein once said something like: “Any fool can make something simple sound complicated. Only a genius can take something complicated and make it sound simple”.
Here at TEFL Toulouse, we take the view that 4 weeks is a very short time to become a teacher. Some TEFL courses provide dozens of pages of categories and sub-categories of objectives, assessment techniques, not to mention long reading lists, and worst of all, most of all this using jargon that you don’t understand yet! We don’t think there is time, and we want to make life easy for you. You need to know what is important to start TEFL teaching, you need to understand it and you need to have a go at putting it into practice, without being distracted by constant acronyms and TEFL jargon.
We prefer to simplify, get on with bare essentials, and maintain the focus on providing you with the tools you need to get up and teach. Only then can you begin to refine your technique.
What’s included in the 4 week TEFL class?
You’ll have at least 6 hours of teaching real students, putting into practice everything you learn on the course. These lessons will be observed by a trainer and include a feedback session afterwards, where you’ll reflect together on how the lesson went. The first teaching English lesson in week 1 will be largely planned for you.
You’ll have the opportunity to observe experienced TEFL teachers teaching, and will also observe your peers’ lessons.
How does English work? Knowing how English works is important if you want to be able to teach it. We include theory sessions on English grammar, including:
- Parts of speech
- Present, past and perfect tenses
- Referring to the future
- Conditional structures
- Auxiliary verbs, modal verbs, phrasal verbs
- Passive structures
- Reported speech
- More complex elements of vocabulary
- Form and function
You’ll learn the different phonological (pronunciation) features of English, including:
- The consonant sounds and symbols
- The vowel sounds and symbols
- Intonation and how it changes meaning
- Stress within words in English
- Stress within sentences and weak forms
- Connected speech
- Regional and international variations of English
Other theory sessions include:
- How to present language in context
- Teaching English grammar and vocabulary
- Improving your students’ speaking skills
- Improving your students’ listening skills
- Improving your students’ writing and reading skills
- Lesson planning – various approaches
- Lesson activities
- Eliciting and concept checking
- Using drama, roleplay and music in the EFL classroom
- Using dictation
- How to correct English students’ errors
- Teacher language
- Computer assisted language learning- the future of TEFL
You’ll learn how to plan lessons effectively, how to create appropriate lesson aims and make sure you achieve them, how to plan the individual stages of a lesson, anticipate problems that may arise during lessons and be prepared with solutions. We also look at:
- Learning to plan a lesson using established “scaffolding”
- Alternative approaches to lesson planning
We look at some different theories of how we learn a language and different approaches we can take when teaching it, as well as the importance of different styles of learning and how they affect our approach.
- Basic principles of TEFL
- Language skills and systems
- Approaches to teaching EFL
- Learner styles
- Learner objectives
In these input sessions you’ll learn how to use both published course books and different types of authentic materials in your lessons.
- Exploiting authentic materials
- Using course books
You’ll learn how to deal with different and difficult situations that can arise in the TEFL classroom (adults, teenagers and 6 to 11s) and different student profiles, as well as how to organise your classroom effectively.
How are Business English classes different to General English classes? You’ll learn how to teach business English skills such as giving presentations, negotiating, dealing with phone calls, participating in meetings socialising, video conferencing…
How do you control a class of teenagers? You’ll learn how to teach a class of Young Learners, some different approaches and activities that you can use to teach kids and teenagers.
You’ll learn how to diagnose an individual TEFL student’s needs, objectives and language issues, then plan a tailor-made series of English lessons.
During the course you’ll have two one to one tutorials with your trainer to discuss your progress and answer any questions you have.
Every afternoon before the teaching practice session, experienced trainers are on-hand to give help and advice for your lesson planning. Note that many TEFL courses don’t offer this, they just have “someone available during lunchtime”!
We’ll give you a two hour session to provide help and advice regarding finding a TEFL job, including CV and interview tips and techniques, where and how to look for a TEFL job, and how to set up as a freelancer (auto-entrepreneur) in France.
We also provide lifetime job guidance.
TEFL course assessment:
Here’s how you’ll be assessed during the 4 weeks:
- Teaching Practice
You’ll have a minimum of 6 hours of observed teaching of real students, followed by feedback with a trainer on your lesson plan and your teaching. You’ll need to show that you can reflect on your own teaching and put into practice constructive feedback.
- One to One project
This project gives you experience in preparing a course of study based on a student’s needs and interests, and also gives you practice teaching just one student. You’ll choose a student, diagnose his or her needs in English, then design a lesson based on this diagnosis, teach it, and evaluate it in depth. Finally you’ll design an imaginary further short course of study for the student.
- Grammar tests
We’ll assess you on how well you’ve assimilated the English grammar and phonology input on the course.
- Unknown Foreign Language Observation Task
You’ll have two beginner lessons in a language that most trainees do not speak, given entirely in the foreign language, and write a short project based on this experience. Through this you’ll gain an insight into how it feels to be one of your future students, being spoken to in a new language. The aim is to help you adapt teaching methods to find other ways of getting our meaning across, and to help you empathise globally to a greater extent with your beginner students. You’ll write a short project based on this experience.