“Teaching English in Madrid” written by – John Byrne
Attended: EBC Madrid, Spain in February 2010
Course choice: Internet search
Teaching English in Madrid
My name is Johnny Byrne and I’m a 46 year old, 3 and a half year veteran of teaching English in Madrid. If you’re here on this website, you’re either researching or toying with the idea of taking the plunge and doing the TEFL course. So with that in mind, and from a purely personal viewpoint, I give you my TEFL story.
After losing my job at home at the end of 2009, I spent Christmas trying to figure out what to do with myself. The whole TEFL thing was something that I had always been curious about, so I started looking into it. Before I knew it I was on the plane to Madrid to start the course.
I was more nervous about starting the course than anything else as I hadn’t opened a text book in anger in many years. Anyway, I got through that and it was a great experience.
When you finish your TEFL certificate course, the next step is to find work. Jim and the folks at EBC send your CV to scores of academies. I got my first work thanks to this. The most important thing at this stage is to have a Spanish phone number. You could receive an offer of work over the phone to start the following day, so be ready.
Another piece of advice I would give you is to be pro-active in the job hunt. Re-send your CV, and phone and call into these academies to arrange an interview. You can always ask EBC to send your CV again to save you some time and effort. The good thing about the EBC job programme is that it’s lifetime, not just a one off service.
There is loads of work teaching English in Madrid at the moment. The tricky thing can be trying to organise your schedule so that you’re not on the metro all day. Don’t be afraid to refuse job offers if they involve a metro, cercanias and bus journey of 2 hours for a 1 hour class. With a little patience and perseverance, you’ll be organised in no time.
As for the classes, you can be teaching anywhere. I’ve taught in Ministries, the Supreme Court, Universities, but mostly in companies. Classes are usually held in a meeting room or perhaps if it’s one to one, then in the student’s office. I’ve always taught adults, but there are lots of classes offered teaching children also. In my experience, all my students have been wonderful, and I can honestly say I haven’t had any bad experiences with anyone yet.
I have also worked on an online course for a few months and have done telephone classes.
You have the opportunity of advertising yourself to give private classes too. There are many websites that offer this service.
So there are many ways of making a decent living once you put in the hours and establish yourself.
Finally, you will be living in a beautiful, vibrant city. I can’t recommend Madrid highly enough. It has everything (except a beach!). Great bars and restaurants, diverse neighbourhoods, super infrastructure, wonderful weather and incredibly safe. You’re also slap bang in the middle of Spain with great access to the rest of the country. Saying that, Madrid certainly has enough to keep you occupied for quite a while.
Right, what are you waiting for ? Go for it !
Best of luck,