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How to become an English tutor?
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Being a teacher is not only one of the most responsible jobs, but also rewarding. As long as English is the international language you always have what to do. Such a profession is so demanding and allows you to work remotely and travel abroad. Thanks to advanced technology, there is a chance to start tutoring either online or offline depending on your preference and abilities. To become a tutor means to inspire people to achieve their goals. People tend to give up every time when they face obstacles. Looking for the easiest way is a part of human beings. So, teachers must support and keep students motivated during the whole learning path. It requires patience, flexibility, and sympathy. People want to speak English fluently having no clue how much effort it takes. Speaking a foreign language implies a lot of different skills such as reading, writing, listening, and grammar comprehension. If you don't imagine what to expect from tutoring, we are going to tell you. As you see, it is such a huge field, so there are a lot of things, which you should pay attention to.
Hard and soft tutor's skills
Whether you want to work in a middle school or teach English online, the basic requirements remain the same. Needless to say, your English level must be excellent as well as knowledge in writing, reading, spelling, vocabulary, and grammar.
Different institutions and even online schools require:
- bachelor's degree;
- clean criminal record;
- International certification.
Of course, such a list of requirements may change from position to position. Some schools hire only native English speakers, whereas others collaborate with non-natives with the proficiency level of English. Some employers ask you to commit to a one-year contract, whereas others offer a flexible schedule. So, you can find different work conditions depending on your abilities. Education remains a must-have, because of so many reasons. Mostly, it relates to employment or government regulations. Thankfully, a field of major doesn't matter, so having any diploma is quite enough to apply for a job.
Needless to say, that personal traits have the same meaning as professional development.
Tutoring implies having such traits as:
- positive thinking;
- an ability to explain twice;
- compassionate curiosity;
- communicative skills.
We've discussed minimum requirements that you should know before a start. But if you are ambitious, be ready to show something else in order to exceed employers' expectations. Don't hide your professional and personal achievements even if you think that it doesn't matter. As you see, every detail is important.
Teaching with no experience
Probably you have noticed that there were no words regarding experience. Of course, that's important. And if you already can boast any relevant professional background, that's only your advantage among other candidates. But if you can't, it doesn't prevent you from getting a job. In this case, it's better to start a career with kids. It won't take so much effort or preparation and will make an adaptation process smoother. There are some workplaces, which will hire you willingly even without experience. Kindergartens, primary schools, language centers are ready to provide training courses to inexperienced tutors. You will have a chance to know new approaches and get practice. However, if you stick to teaching adults, getting a job in high school or university doesn't seem possible without a year of experience. Another way to realize newcomers' potential is online tutoring.
Whether you are going to teach online or offline, you have fat chances without international certification. Having CELTA or TEFL/TESOL certificate offsets your lack of experience and teaching license. These prove your ability to work abroad. It lifts your chances to get promoted. Even if you are not going to work overseas, that might impress even employers in your home country. The minimum of knowledge is a 120-hours TEFL course. It gives you a theoretical part to understand language learners and their problems. You will be able to choose a particular strategy depending on age, culture, and level. Such a certification fits newcomers as well as qualified English tutors. CELTA is different and considered to be more complex. Both of them will give you an opportunity to work abroad even without experience. However, TEFL is two times cheaper and flexible in terms of duration. There is a 50% discount for those, who want to improve your knowledge.
There are a lot of tutoring platforms and online schools, which provide constant support to teachers and students. There is undoubtful merit such as an ability to work with no relevant background and teach English on prepared materials. You have a chance to set your own schedule and working hours. Everything you need is a stable Internet connection and appropriate equipment. Usually, a lesson price isn't high, especially for those, who have just started. But as long as you get experienced, you will be able to set your own price. That's a good chance for non-native speakers because such teaching companies hire staff around the world, and there is huge demand for any English tutors.
There are some companies, where you conduct virtual classrooms:
- Landi English;
- Whales English;
- Magic Ears;
- English Ninjas.
If you have enough knowledge to prepare lesson's plans and find materials on your own. There is a chance to collaborate with some schools on different terms. They won't provide you trainings or support, but you always have a queue of students. You can set a schedule and monitor students' progress on your own. Somewhere you will have an opportunity to raise a price. Such kind of freedom is tempting, especially if you have family or travel a lot.
You can teach online in:
- Skima talk;
How to become a tutor in Cambly?
Cambly provides a free schedule, which allows you to teach online and call students at any time. The system sets the price for a minute and counts salary automatically. Learners mostly are adults, who are motivated to learn English because of moving, promotion, and applying for university. Thankfully, there are no strict requirements to apply for a job.
Some stages of hiring:
- answer basic questions;
- complete a profile;
- make a video introduction.
The last thing will help you to attract students with your charisma rather than professional development. That's a good start for inexperienced English teachers. Tell why you love teaching, how you can help, and your point of view regarding learning a foreign language. Let potential students know that you understand how difficult English might be. As we discussed, people tend to choose tutors according to personal traits.
The best places to teach offline
If you can't imagine your life without travel, that's a way for you. There are some countries, which offer not only decent work conditions but also a warm climate and wonderful sights. Part-time job in Asian countries will give you a chance to get involved in another culture and get international practice, whereas working in Europe will open so many professional opportunities. If you are ready to change your life drastically, you may commit to a one-year contract in China. If it's too long to be far from home for you, there is a chance to choose summer camps, which last no longer than 3 months. On the contrary, volunteer programs won't help you to make a fortune, however will give unbelievable experience. And if you are fond of studying, then internships will enhance your knowledge and show a new world. As you see, there is a bunch of opportunities to get a job abroad. Of course, everything depends on you. Education, qualification, relevant background are such things, which influence salary and other bonuses.
There are some friendly countries for ESL teachers:
- United Arab Emirates;
- South Korea;
There are a lot of things that you must take into account before packing such as visa regulations, start-up expenses, salary, contract duration, flight reimbursement, and housing. If you are ready to choose a particular country to start your career, check our article to weigh everything up.
ESL teachers have a lot of ways on how to expand professional horizons and get international practice. An average salary ranges from $300 to $4000 a month. Some companies provide training and different perks in order to make their employees feel comfortable. Apartment, medical insurance, and even food might be included if you consider working overseas. However, due to the current pandemic situation, it's not bad to have a chance to stay home, be safe and make money at the same time. As long as online education is developing, there are so many ways to work. Also, you can conduct private tutoring, and work on your own without support. In this case, you must be ready to take up advertising, prepare materials, and pay taxes. Usually, tutors with huge experience opt for it, to try something new. That's the best way to raise a price and work only with a particular type of student.
If you think that labor market is overwhelmed, you are partially right. English teaching is getting more popular each year because of decent terms. It's a cut-throat competition. That's why it is important to prove that you are a perfect candidate.
There are some steps, which will help you to start your path:
- weigh your strengths and weaknesses up;
- try to offset lacks by merits;
- opt for a key thing whether it's salary, experience, or workplace;
- choose a way of working either online or offline;
- choose a type of learner.
We hope that this article will help you to make the right choice. There is always room for improvement, so don't neglect opportunities to enhance your skills. We are looking forward to reading your feedback in the comments below.
CELTA, EFL, ESL, TEFL, TESOL