In an earlier post I rambled on about TEFL – my ambitions to undertake a 4-week course, different regions and what to be mindful of. Well, now TEFL certified, I can tell you all about my experience rather than my desk research!
Cost: This will depend on the time of year you go. I did the course in July during off season and it cost under £600 / $780 roughly, which is significantantly cheaper than other courses when you consider the accommodation is included in that price.
Course content: The course covers everything from teaching methodologies to grammar to practical teaching experience. In our first week we were already preparing lesson plans and practising teaching to peers. By week two we were in government schools teaching to 30+ every day!
Comprehensive, fun and challenging, I can’t fault the content.
It also helps to have an approachable, knowledgeable and engaging teacher – TEFLworld marks this box with a giant green tick thanks to Teacher Darren.
Where: Koh Samui
Originally not my chosen destination. My heart was initially set on Chiang Mai. But after two courses fell through in N. Thailand, it seemed that the next best course on a backpacker budget was in the south.
Koh Samui is on the gulf of Thailand and is a picturesque postcard of white sandy beaches, turquoise water and sun brollies. It’s beautiful. In places. But if I was giving my honest opinion I’d have to say that the westernisation of Koh Samui could put you off. Due to its round the year sunshine reputation, holidaymakers flock here in there thousands. There’s no issue in that, it’s just my opinion that that fact leads to an absence of character. In Chiang Mai you’re spoilt for temples and history. On Koh Samui you’re more likely to run into a ‘lady bar‘ than a sacred site.
That said, I still had an awesome time. Outside of teaching, our group found respite in the lovely beaches and the toasty sea. We were also fans of checking out Chaweng’s food market – a lot of shawarma, pancakes and pizzas were consumed that month! Ang Thong National Marine Park is a short ferry trip away and is an absolute must see if you’re in the Gulf of Thailand.
Accommodation: We stayed at Joy Residence. Beds were comfy, bathrooms were clean and fairly modern and there’s a pool. Sadly, the big issue with Joy is its absence of WiFi in the bedrooms. To connect you have to take yourself downstairs or in the hallways where there is no A/C and plenty of mosquitoes.
How to get there: Most people will fly into Bangkok or travel via it. I flew to Surat Thani for very little (approx £30). Once there you can get a bus + ferry combo which usually costs around £8, if you go with Raja Ferry. Another brucey bonus that comes inclusive of the price is pick-up from ports in Samui from TEFL world.
Summary review: Minus the minor WiFi setback the course package is undeniably excellent value for money. Would I recommend TEFLworld – absolutely.