The CELTA (input scary music)…
non-stop/busy/emotional/hectic/confidence boosting/observations/teaching teaching teaching/feedback/essays/grammar confusion/power tripping tutors/lovely helpful tutors/friendship building/life-long memories/weight loss/incredible students/over-head projector overload/nerve-wracking/educational/fun???
In June/July 2008 I took part in the dreaded CELTA course (Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults, credited by the University of Cambridge) in Vietnam. Ho Chi Minh City to be precise. To add to the intensity of the course I did it in Ho Chi Minh!!! As anyone who has travelled to Ho Chi Minh City (or Saigon as the locals prefer) knows, that is one crazy city where crossing the road can prove very tricky indeed!
I studied the CELTA at ILA Vietnam. An enormous school with great facilities.
I taught three different groups of adult students throughout the month long course. The student’s were split into groups depending on their English ability, either beginner, intermediate or advanced level. I taught classes to all three groups.
Despite how full on the course was, I have no regrets whatsoever about doing it. Not only is the CELTA recognised all over the world as the best TEFL you can do. It is also the most widely taken TEFL. It gave me the confidence I needed to lead a class and it really taught me how to teach English as a foreign language successfully. I would really recommend this course if you are thinking about teaching English as a foreign language especially if you don’t believe you can do it purely because you are a native English speaker (side note – that’s a good point of view to have, just because you’re a native speaker does not mean you can teach English). You will learn so much, gain many new skills and new lesson ideas.
Plus it’s fantastic because you can take part in the course all around the world so you could use it as your route into living and working in another country or as a way to get your travels started!
In addition to that because the course is so intense you get pretty close to your fellow teacher trainers, so you can make some great new friends from around the globe. After my CELTA course finished a few of us got together and took a well deserved break exploring the Mekong Delta. Despite the course being incredibly stressful and really, really tiring a lot of great things came out of it.
For more details about the course check out the University of Cambridge ESOL website and good luck!