Carlye Goldman Reflects on International TEFL Academy experience

From June 4 to 29, 2018, I completed a 4-week TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) course in Barva, Hereida, Costa Rica. Post-completion of the course, my TEFL certification permits me to teach English anywhere around the world. Being a Social Entrepreneurship major with no authentic teaching experience, I was intimated by the idea of becoming an ESL (English as a Second Language) teacher. However, I was surrounded by 19-other passionate TEFL trainees coming from all different backgrounds, which was an inspiring and comforting factor. Even though, all of us being a wide range of ages and possessing different credentials, we all shared a common goal—the desire to become effective and successful ESL teachers.

Being a part of the 4-week course gave me the opportunity to teach 6 different teaching practicums to real ESL students. With no teaching experience at all, I was timid to execute my teaching practicums with full confidence. However, International TEFL Academy Costa Rica (ITA) prepared me sufficiently and teaching in a real ESL setting became to seem so natural to me. Teaching students older in age than me was daunting and yet so inspiring. I learned so much from them, as they did from me. They yearn to speak English better than I can. They would elicit as much information out of me to expand their English vocabulary and grammar knowledge. I learned that teaching starter students, typically high school students, is such a challenge, yet so rewarding. With ESL, we are taught to not provide any translations to vocabulary words of the students’ native tongue. This is how they learn best. The ITA philosophy of teaching ESL is just incredible—English only with immense Student Talk Time. The teaching style is effective, and reliable 100% of the time.

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