Imagine finishing your work day and being able to head to the beach or see incredible animals in the rainforest or hang out by a waterfall or relax in some natural hot springs? Yes, this is all possible for a teacher in Costa Rica. Teaching in Costa Rica is a rewarding and adventurous experience. There are many myths about teaching in Costa Rica that we would like to unravel so that you know the truth. Below are 4 of these myths debunked.
#1. You need to speak Spanish
This is a common misconception. You do not need to speak Spanish to teach English in Costa Rica. Part of the TEFL methodology is to not directly translate vocabulary into the students’ native language. Speaking solely English provides constant exposure and practice for students. Listening and speaking skills are important when learning English, therefore constant exposure will aid those skills. It also fosters an immersive and effective language learning experience. Additionally, it encourages critical thinking and problem solving in the target language.
At Costa Rica TEFL you are taught many methods that you can use in the classroom to increase comprehension and effectively teach English vocabulary. These methods include the constant use of cognates, visuals, gestures, actions and more. Also, it’s important that the vocabulary used is carefully selected and useful to your students.
Many of our graduates came to Costa Rica with little to no Spanish speaking skills and are now very successful English teachers. Plus, immersion is a great way to learn and practice Spanish, so you can do that while you are living and teaching in Costa Rica!
#2. You have to have teaching experience
Yet another common misconception. No teaching degree nor prior teaching experience is required! Often people ask “But I have no teaching experience, how am I supposed to know how to teach with no experience?” This is where the training at Costa Rica TEFL comes in. The 4 week, 160 hour course covers teaching methodologies, classroom management, English grammar, learning styles, lesson planning and more.
Additionally, you will have the opportunity to teach 10-20 observed teaching hours. These classes are given to locals in the community in Samara, Costa Rica. The teacher trainers observe every class and provide you with detailed feedback on your teaching performance so you improve throughout the course and are prepared for your TEFL career.
Throughout the four weeks you will learn how to create effective lesson plans with our TEFL steps to mastery and learn how to create communicative activities for every student level.
#3. Teaching grammar is impossible
Grammar can be intimidating, we get it. Not to worry though, it is NOT impossible to teach nor does it have to be complicated. It’s as simple as thinking like a native English speaker- which you are! You know the language, therefore you can do grammar.
Another perk of the TEFL training at CRTEFL is the ease of learning grammar and tenses. You will have classes based around learning grammar, be able to practice using grammar during the course, apply it all to your lessons, teach it in observed teaching practice and have fun while doing it.
Before you know it, you will be a grammar expert!
#4. You will only teach young children
Learning comes in all shapes and sizes… and ages! Teaching English abroad will give you the opportunity to teach all age groups, from energetic young children to eager adults. We provide lifetime job placement assistance upon completion of the course. Our graduates have worked in many types of situations but the two most common are in an elementary school with children or in a language school with adults. There is also the opportunity to live anywhere in the world and travel while teaching English online!
The 10-20 hours of observed teaching practice during the CRTEFL course includes teaching children, adults of all proficiency levels and virtually. This exposes you to all of the options and gives you the chance to figure out which you prefer to teach.
Now that you know the truth about these myths, doesn’t it sound ideal to teach in Costa Rica? You may not know where to start but don’t worry, Costa Rica TEFL has you covered. The first step is to apply to the CRTEFL program to get TEFL certified. After completing the course in Samara, Costa Rica you are ready to begin teaching! Pack your bags and begin your new life abroad!
Send an email at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information or for an application form!
By: Alexis Lattin
Administrative Coordinator CRTEFL