Age is just a number!
Age is really just a number when it comes to Costa Rica TEFL!
You don’t have to have a ton of life experience to do TEFL, I can confirm! My name is Emily Abono, and I completed my TEFL certification at the young age of 19.
People might try to tell you that age is an important factor, and even that age limits you. I had just finished my Associate’s degree in the United States, and I knew that I wasn’t quite ready to pursue my Bachelor’s. I got to thinking: how I could gain some life experience, travel, and make a difference? This is when I found TEFL. Many people doubted that this was the right choice for me. But, ultimately I didn’t factor in anybody else’s opinions when I decided to make this choice for myself. You don’t have to be a certain age to know what you want, and this is something I am excited to represent as a TEFL graduate.
In the TEFL program, you get the opportunity to teach people who are all different ages. The students learning here at TEFL are also great examples that you don’t need to fit a certain age standard to decide to do something and succeed!
During the duration of my program, I got the privilege of working with adults as old as 70. This was amazing to me, because it’s evident that they have strong intrinsic motivation to learn and understand the language. These students aren’t making excuses. They are pursuing the knowledge of the English language, because they truly believe it is important in their life. I felt a very personal connection to the students I worked with during my program. I felt that I could learn a lot from them even though I was technically their teacher. Our mutual love for learning was what brought us all together at TEFL, and I saw this as a beautiful thing.
My students treated me with the same respect they wanted to receive. It didn’t matter that our age gap was quite a lot. It made the classroom dynamic that much more interesting and engaging.
Before signing up for the program, one might think that four weeks is a long time, but it really goes by so fast. There is so much growth that happens in those four weeks. I feel that I personally matured so much during the four weeks as well as learned so much about myself. I came into the experience feeling somewhat small, literally speaking as I was the youngest person in my group. Going in with a little self doubt in the back of my mind was intimidating, but I quickly realized I had nothing to worry about.
The teachers are warm and encouraging, and they will do everything in their power to help you succeed. From syntax to creating fun, stimulating lesson plans; they support you the whole way. I felt like I was a part of a family at TEFL. I remember looking around at my classmates and thinking how impressive it was that we all had worked so hard and accomplished something so powerful! Obtaining my TEFL certificate is something I am definitely proud of, but I feel even more proud that I did it before I reached my twenties.
My advice to anyone that is curious about the program is to go for it! As long as you are a legal adult (18 years), then there is no reason why you can’t do TEFL! It will open doors that you wouldn’t have even considered available to you. You will get to add this amazing certification to your resume, and get real world experience in something that is important. Don’t listen to voices of limitation and make a difference in a way that fulfills you.