Teaching English as a foreign language is a great opportunity that is available to you in many countries, Spain being a great place to start. Many people choose Spain as their base for TEFL teaching due to its proximity to the UK, its temperate climes and the excellent lifestyle and food it offers. However, before booking your flights and jetting of to warmer lands there are some preparations you must take.
In order to become a paid teacher of English as a foreign language you will be required to study for your TEFL qualification. This can be done either from home and online or at a language center that is TEFL registered, many people choosing to take a TEFL course in London. There are several courses available and you can opt for more or less hours. The longer the course you take, the more expense the fee, but this will in due course set you up for a better job on arrival in Spain.
Choose Your Destination
When you are considering Spain as your destination for TEFL teaching, study the country before simply opting for the bright lights of Madrid or Barcelona. Be aware that depending on whereabouts you head in Spain, the culture as well as the weather and the language will vary. A job in Madrid will mean a city life with cold winters and long hot summers; a position on the Costa Blanca will offer you a warm climate all year round, the chance to delve into the Valencian language and when you are feeling homesick, the chance to eat imported British food.
Spain may be commonly known as a country where the sun shines and people take siestas, but there is a lot more to learn before you leave your homeland behind. Spain may not be too far in miles from the UK, but the culture is diverse and unique; swap apple trees for orange groves and a nine till five job for one that carries on into the night and you will become close to understanding Spain. The Spanish are renowned for long lunches with plenty of wine, but this is compensated by a split working day that will commonly finish at 9pm.
Learn Some Basic Spanish
Although in the classroom it will not be expected of you to speak in Spanish, if you understand at least some of what a group of rowdy teenagers are saying, you will have a head start. Asides the awkward classroom situations where you will find yourself alienated, simple every day situations such as going to the chemist or catching a train will require some Spanish; although there are plenty of available jobs in Spain for teaching English, the percentage of Spanish adults that speak English with some level of fluency is extremely low.
Do Some Background Research on Rental Prices and Your Expected Salary
When applying for jobs in Spain, the majority of positions will be part time in language academies (academias) that often require its teachers to have certificates from accredited TEFL courses. Although the hourly wage is very acceptable by Spanish standards when compared to that of a waiter, your hours will like be around a maximum of 20 a week.
With these points in hand, it is then time to apply and secure a position as a TEFL teacher in Spain. Being prepared will allow you to be more confident when you travel, and having a plan b is a very good idea. Finding work as an English teacher in Spain is relatively easy; making a full time career out of TEFL teaching is however rather more difficult.