You don't have to travel abroad to teach English; there are plenty of immigrants who need help learning the English language. Depending on your qualifications, you can teach English as a second language (ESL) at a public school, community college, community center, church, library, corporation or for a private group.
No matter where you're teaching, it can be daunting to get up in front of a classroom, particularly one filled with students you don't share a common language with -- yet. Class can quickly turn into a game of charades. But there are plenty of free online resources to provide you with handouts and lively lesson plans [source: Teaching Tips]. There are also many ESL teachers willing to share their best tips online.
Some of those essential tips include:
- Limit student work groups to three students so everyone gets a chance to talk.
- Ask a student to read the lesson instructions rather than doing it yourself.
- Have students underline words in a text that they don't know.
- Stop a classroom activity in the swing of things, before the students start to get bored.
Seasoned ESL teachers also recommend having the students talk to each other as much as possible. You can facilitate that by having another student answer a classmate's question about pronunciation or a word's definition rather than doing it yourself [source: Regan].
Pause periodically throughout lessons to ask students, "Is that clear?" If someone says it isn't, ask for a volunteer from the class to explain. The more time your students have to practice their English, the better it is for them -- and you.
Read on to find out what requirements you need to teach English at home and abroad.