Experiences TEFL Spain
Our students tell you their TEFL experiences in Madrid
Sam Kass – Monclair, New Jersey USA
Dear Prospective Canterbury Teachers, My name is Sam Kass and roughly one year ago I was in the same position you are now. Like many, although certainly not all Canterbury Teachers, I had finished my college degree the spring before I decided to become a teacher with Canterbury. With five months out of college I had already held down three different jobs, two of which took place at odd hours—usually during the middle of the night.
The third was an office job which I admittedly liked, but wasn’t ready to commit to. I decided that before I settled into whatever career was waiting for me, I wanted to strike out into the world one more time for an adventure the results of which I was unsure of. I figured that at the very least, being able to speak Spanish in the States couldn’t hurt.
My experience abroad over the past year was absolutely a positive one. And yes, I did learn Spanish (I had never taken a course in the language prior to my arrival in Madrid). I suppose that the most important thing for you to know if you are weighing the pros and cons of what you are imagining the program will be like is the fact that Canterbury as an organization keeps its word. You will have enough work. You will be able to support yourself.
You also have to be prepared to be proactive. The experience as part of the Canterbury Academy is very much as you make it (and I believe that this is absolutely a good thing). If you want to bring in lots of money every month you’re going to need to go out of your way to let people know that you want more work. However, Canterbury is easy to communicate with, and if you make an effort with them, they will happily work with you to see that you’re satisfied. They want you. Spain wants you. There is no shortage of jobs!
Canterbury also offers access to the entire community of teachers with organized events and field trips. Of course, all activities are optional so you can be as involved as you like or otherwise. Again, I believe that the fact that all socialization is voluntary creates a much better atmosphere in which to warm up to a new living environment. The majority of my own social network came directly out of my daily TEFL training courses during the first three weeks of my time in Madrid.
I’ve read other letters on the website and many former teachers attest to the validity and helpfulness of the training program with regard to teaching. And yes, the course prepared me well for a job that otherwise would have been very difficult to break into. But equally, or perhaps a bit more important, is the immediate induction to a community of people who all speak English, have all just arrived in Spain for a significant amount of time, and meet daily for a period of weeks. When you’ve just walked off an airplane into a country that you’ve never seen before, being able to make a friend means all the difference in the world.
If you’re looking for an adventure—a chance to learn something new about both the world and yourself, and to do so in an environment that is both welcoming and reliable then I can confidently recommend the Canterbury TEFL program to you.
Sam Kass – TEFL Class of November.
Victoria Cristina Salas – Caracas, Venezuela
Dear TEFL Students,I decided to move to Spain to get to know its culture, traditions and to live new experiences. I grew up in a Spanish speaking country but I learned English because I have spent long periods of time in the USA every year and I had an excellent private English teacher, David Williams. He was a TEFL certified teacher and he was very proud of it, and he told me that I could teach too. He was my inspiration. I arrived to Madrid in September and my first thought was to look for an academy that could certify me as an English Teacher.
I chose Canterbury and it was a great choice. This prestigious academy has an excellent four week course in which you acquire all the tools and strategies that you need to be a well-prepared teacher. The knowledge of English grammar and workshops where everything is put into practice is the heart of the program. Also, Canterbury will book classes for you once you successfully complete the program.
In addition, there is the Canterbury Club that organizes activities every month with the purpose to immerse yourself into the Spanish traditions, visit new places and of course, meet new people. It is not a problem if you do not speak Spanish, Canterbury has Spanish classes for you too!
Stop thinking if this is the right place for you, come and live the experience, you won’t regret it! There is one word to describe life in Madrid: Fiesta. If you like parties, you need to come and live LA MARCHA MADRILENA!
Live the best time of your life and come to Madrid.
Victoria Cristina Salas – TEFL Class of November.
Jessica Smith –Dell Rapids, South Dakota USA
To all TEFL students: My name is Jessica Smith and I am a 24-year-old American girl that moved to Spain in October. I am originally from South Dakota and decided that I wanted to travel. I had heard that teaching English was a way that I could support myself overseas while learning Spanish at the same time. I began searching the internet and found all kinds of schools that offered a TEFL certification in a Spanish environment. I was actually going to move to Costa Rica until I saw Canterbury’s website in Madrid. It was a school that advertised TEFL certification, a Spanish environment, and immediate job placement during or after the course. That was it- I decided that I wanted to move to Madrid, Spain and work at Canterbury.
Canterbury’s month long course definitely prepares you for teaching. There was a lot I didn’t know about the English language until I took this course. The course is divided into three parts: basic fundamentals of English, Business English, and English for children. All three parts of the course provide you with the necessary skills and confidence you need to teach English. I teach both Business English and English for children and I enjoy teaching both types of classes. As promised, Canterbury does provide you with an internship. You can begin working during or after the course. The “hands on” experience is intimidating at first but it quickly becomes like second nature.
The staff at Canterbury is very friendly and will help you with any questions that you may have. The library at Canterbury has a variety of materials that will you help you prepare for your classes. I use some of the books at the library as well as some English books that I brought from home. I recommend using Raymond Murphy’s textbooks and all levels of the English File textbooks.
There are also many activities and excursions that Canterbury plans. You are not obligated to go on any of these excursions but I must say that I recommend doing so.
If you are thinking about moving to Europe to teach English, there could be a position for you at Canterbury. You will meet life-long friends, have a stable job, and have an experience of a life-time.
Que te vaya bien,
Jessica Smith –TEFL Class of November.
Thomas Blair – Washington, DC
Simply put, Canterbury is your best choice for teaching English in Spain. Canterbury provides fantastic instruction and great support on both an academic and cultural level. I participated in the class of October and worked with Canterbury.
I had to return to America to attend Medical School, but I would have happily stayed with Canterbury for longer. When I first arrived in Spain I knew no Spanish and little about teaching English. After only two weeks of the course I felt confident in teaching classes. By the time the course was finished I felt well equipped with the tools to be a great English teacher. The classes were interesting, informative, and, most importantly, practical.
Not only did I gain many skills through Canterbury, but I also met wonderful friends and forged relationships with talented teachers. Financially speaking Canterbury is very reasonably priced, and they allowed me to work as many hours as I wanted so that I could live comfortably in Madrid. The financial, social, and academic aspects of Canterbury helped me have an exceptional time abroad. If you have an interest in teaching English in Spain join Canterbury!
Thomas Blair – TEFL Class of November.
Shawn Douglas – St. Louis, Missouri
Dear Potential TEFL Students, I want to take the time to write and share my rewarding experiences with Canterbury’s TEFL Program. Without their assistance, I don’t think I could have managed my transition to Spain so well. Based on my experience, I strongly believe that Canterbury has something to offer many others like me.
I decided to come to Spain after working almost five years in a corporate environment in the United States. I needed a change, and I knew a few people in Madrid. I knew that my English background was strong, so I started to look around at the available schools for TEFL certification. After taking long looks at many different programs, I decided on Canterbury’s program, and I was extremely happy with the results.
I ultimately chose Canterbury for many important reasons. First, their tuition rates were – and still are – very competitive with similar schools. Some schools were charging thousands of U.S. Dollars for their programs yet offering similar or even fewer benefits. Second, Canterbury gave me the promise of paid teaching work immediately after or even during the course! This work additionally counted towards the impressive 40-hour teaching requirement of the school’s program.
Third, they offered a dizzying array of social events that students could attend. Through their years of experience in Spain, the school has set up a variety of interesting and entertaining events in locations all across the country. During these events, I was able to make connections and long-lasting friendships that have made living in Spain a much more relaxing and enjoyable experience.
Ultimately, Canterbury gave me the peace of mind I needed to get the most out of working and living in Spain. With their friendly and knowledgeable staff, their offer of work, and their variety of social events, I was able to do what I came to Spain for originally; relax and have some fun teaching English.
Good fortune to you all in your future teaching endeavors!
Shawn Douglas – TEFL Class of September.
Lesley WInchester – Kirkcaldy, United Kingdom
To all TEFL candidates, I hope you find the following helpful to you when making your decision about coming to work and live in Spain.
I am a 24 year old British woman, and have been living and working in Madrid for almost a year, working with the academy Canterbury. When I first arrived in Madrid naturally I was apprehensive about how I would be able to integrate within this country, especially as I did not speak a word of Spanish. Soon after arriving at and meeting with the staff at Canterbury, I soon felt at ease. The people at Canterbury are very friendly and will assist you with anything you need, whether it be help to find accomodation, advice and info on employment or just expatriate advice in general.
The TEFL Spain course itself is very insightful, challenging and engaging, and working intensively with an intimate sized group (sizes vary), you will soon find your comfort zone and discover that you have made friends for life. The course topics change daily, providing diversity and challenge, and instilling you with both the confidence and the skills to potentially become an outstanding teacher.
Although there are many reputable teaching academies in Madrid, Canterbury do differ in that they can guarantee you classes when you complete the course, (some even begin during the course) and not only are you paid for these classes but they also contribute toward your 40 hours of practice teaching, which is compulsory but possibly unpaid with other academies.
Another benefit with these classes is that you will be working in homes and offices in Madrid, which not only provide you with an opportunity to visit different areas of the city but also allows for a more flexible routine and can insure you more spare time!
Working with Canterbury, you will typically find yourself with a three day weekend, Friday to Sunday, which gives you a chance to explore the city, catch up with friends and party while still leaving time for lesson planning etc. Very often Canterbury provide day trips to various places and events which will not only allow you to really experience Spanish culture, but provide you with memories that will last a lifetime.
Kind Regards and ¡Buena suerte!
Lesley WInchester – TEFL Class of August.