Life as a TEFL teacher

Life as a TEFL teacher | NAME’s story

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to teach English to students from all over the world?

Life as a TEFL teacher in Turkey

Aysha, Turkey

TEFL in Brazil

Carlos, Brazil

Life as a TEFL teacher in South Korea

Keon Ho, South Korea

TEFL teacher experience in Japan

Riku, Japan

Well, I’ve been doing it since 1992 and can sum up life as a TEFL teacher in 3 words: rewarding, life-enhancing and empowering!


Teaching is not about the teacher, teaching is all about the learners. One of the greatest pleasures of being part of learner’s journey is watching them grow in confidence and in skills and feeling you have contributed, helped and nurtured in some way. This is a job where you get instant feedback. Your learners engaged faces, happy faces and thankful faces are what makes this the best job I’ve ever had.  I tried other fields of work, but working with international students is the only job where I can honestly say, no day is ever the same, EVER! No job has ever brought me so much joy! 

Life enhancing!

Being a TEFL teacher has given me the opportunity to live and work both in the UK and abroad. I have been privileged enough to work with teens in Brazil, children in Egypt  and adults from over 30 different countries in multi lingual classes in the UK. These experiences open me to new perspectives, let me see the world through a multi-cultural lens and life is all the better for it! I have met thousands of learners on the way and many have become true lifelong friends. 


Publishers have created a wealth of materials to support you in class. There are fabulous course books and amazing online resources to be explored. So why do I feel empowered? Because the best person to decide what your learners need is you and your learners! I find a course book is invaluable and take my hat off to the writers.  I also make use of many online websites, but the key is cherry picking and learner involvement and ownership. Your class = your learners = their needs, and not many jobs provide that!  You can also choose to work online, face to face, with classes, with 1:1 students, the possibilities are endless and the choice is yours!

I am now fortunate enough to be CELTA trainer for ITTC and get to train new teachers and set them off on their own teaching journey.

How to become a TEFL teacher

If you are interested in becoming a teacher why not check out our CELTA courses on our Course Finder

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Melanie Preston
Melanie Preston
October 23, 2020 5:52 pm

Incredible teacher, well done xx