Print Posted By Lost in France on 24 Oct 2011 in Living in France - Business and employment in France

Teaching English In France

tefltoulouse France is a wonderful country to live in, as you already know if you are reading this. Teaching English provides a way of making a living, and a way to make new friends. A TEFL Certificate ("TESOL Program if you are American) is the minimum qualification you need to start teaching.

As little as 5 years ago, language schools in France were taking on pretty much anyone to teach English, as long as they were a native speaker and spoke a bit of French. But thankfully for French learners of English, there are more and more TEFL qualified teachers out there, so language schools no longer need to take on non qualified teachers. The good news for you is that, contrary to popular belief, most of France is still FAR from being saturated with TEFL teachers, just as suddenly the whole of France seems to want to learn English! Obviously you are never going to be a millionaire teaching, but it is a great way to carry on living in France, or in any non- English speaking country in the world for that matter.

But it's not easy choosing the right TEFL course. If you do some "googling for TEFL courses, you will find a dazzling array of courses offered in attractive locations, but when you start clicking you are suddenly being offered 100's of dollars discounts to have the study and backpacking holiday of a lifetime in Thailand with 20 year olds

The other option that seems like fabulous value for money is an online course. But wait - it is likely that nobody will ever see you teaching and give you feedback! Is that such a good idea? As a comparison, could you learn to drive by watching videos? How will you feel when the language school interviewing you (though it is unlikely you will get an interview with an online course qualification) asks you to do a demo lesson?

You don't want to be funneled around the world by a vast American chain or have teaching theory and grammar presented to you on a computer.... you just wanted a rewarding course and then to get teaching, knowing you are doing the job properly, in your little village in France!

It's essential to choose a course which is going to give you enough training to get you a job. Most language schools insist on an externally moderated and accredited 4 week TEFL course with at least 6 hours of teaching practice, as a minimum requirement to get you an interview. CELTA, Trinity and IATQuO are all respected TEFL course accreditors - IATQuO now accredit the majority of TEFL courses in France. Online or weekend courses won't get you a job on the whole, because employers need to see you have repeated experiences standing up and teaching.

If you can get a course which includes sessions or modules on teaching Young Learners (language learners aged 5 to 17) or Business English then that is an added bonus as these are growing areas.


What type of work is out there? How much will I get paid? Well, Business English still seems to be No.1. "Young Learners are on the up in France - especially teaching toddlers. Teaching teenager groups after school will probably take off soon, as it did in Spain in the 90s.

Telephone or Skype lessons are common in France - and you can do this from home. The student calls you, you teach for half an hour slots usually, and then the school pays you.

More Info

Jonathan Davies is the owner and course director of TEFL TOULOUSE

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