On Friday, the 16th of December, I finished my teacher training at the International House in Madrid. It was a grueling two months of lesson planning, classroom instructions, projects, and teaching real students. At the end of it all, I am now officially qualified to teach… drum roll please…English!!! Yes, English to non native English speakers.
Although I officially received my qualification yesterday, I have been teaching in Madrid for over a month now. I already knew that teachers were underpaid for the amount of work they performed. However, that reality was established for me as I have not been able to sleep properly since I started working. My days and nights are consumed by lesson planning. Thankfully I don’t have to grade or mark papers, but there is so much more to teaching English than having a command of the English language.
Teaching is about managing a classroom, anticipating problems, building rapport with students, keeping the students interested in the lesson, and also doing research (re-learning concepts that we haven’t reviewed since we were in school). Often times there are no books or lesson plans. So I have to make up my own as I go a long; a very hard task for a new teacher with no previous training.
While my experience in Madrid hasn’t been the most pleasant, I think the teaching aspect has been highly fulfilling. I am now considering other ways to use these skills I have acquired long-term. I could teach, but the pay is not compatible with the amount of work being done. Considering the amount of money language schools are earning across the globe to meet the growing demand of English learners – I’m thinking that opening up a language school isn’t a bad idea!