I’ve been globetrotting around Europe since I completed my teacher training course
Having a TEFL qualification has been a passport to travel. I feel like I’m living the dream! I’m Scottish and had itchy feet and needed to travel. No sooner had I received my degree, I signed up for a TEFL course in my hometown. One month later, I had my bags packed and off to Paris I went. That was the start of an adventure that is still continuing.
Paris was a fantastic experience. The Eiffel Tower, The Pompidou centre and all the other famous sights! My first job was in a secondary school as a language assistant. I gave conversation classes to teenagers, and I was lucky in that the school was great and my teaching supervisor gave me loads of help and support. My French stay was hugely enjoyable but by the end of the academic year, I was ready to move on and put my teacher training course to use in a new country!
Spain was my next port of call, Madrid to be exact. I worked for a language school teaching Business English in companies. Although my degree wasn’t business related (Fine Arts!) I prepared my classes and learnt the vocabulary, and the classes went really well. My students were so friendly, and I met some really interesting Spanish people.
As I never worked Friday afternoons, every weekend was a long weekend! Once I had seen Madrid, I visited the towns around Madrid. Toledo is a stunning medieval city and Segovia has a truly impressive Roman aqueduct running through the town centre. The nearest beach is about 4 hours away, so I spent quite a bit of time with the Spanish fiesta siesta life!
My English teaching training course took me to Italy next
After a year in Madrid, I was ready to change and to be honest, I was tired of big cities. I wanted to try a more sedate pace of life. I ended up in a small town, Barletta, near Bari in the heel of Italy. I really got a feel for the traditional Italian lifestyle, olive oil, wine, local bread and cheeses. I loved it!
I got a job teaching in a nursery school. The work was certainly energy-draining: just me and 15 three-year-olds! But it was also very rewarding. The children were really nice, and they learnt so quickly! I could notice their improvement almost on a weekly basis.
I used my weekends to see the usual sights of Italy: Naples, Rome and Venice. I even managed a boat-trip from Bari to Greece once! It really was a fantastic experience.
I’m back in Scotland for the moment, planning my next journey. I’m torn between backpacking around South America, teaching as I go, or a year in China teaching in a school.
I’ve always wanted to see South America, but I’m told that teachers have good salaries in China and live really well. Not that teachers live badly in Europe. You can pay the bills and travel about, but you probably won’t save any money! Still, I have no complaints. Completing my English teaching training course was the best thing I’ve ever done and has given me the freedom to travel the world, having the best experiences of my life!
Based on an article written by Aimee McLuod.
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