Soon after our alumni, Fatima received her TESOL certificate, she packed her bags, bid farewell to South Africa, and began English teaching abroad in Thailand. We are so proud of Fatima for pursuing her dreams in the TEFL industry! Here’s Fatima’s story:
Hello there everyone! My name is Fatima Abrahams. Today I am one of many South Africans living in Thailand as an English teacher!
Why did you decide to become a TESOL teacher?
Becoming a TESOL teacher was never on my list of careers, but I gained experience in teaching before I even knew that TESOL would become my career. I became a TESOL teacher because I felt I could help many people improve their language skills since English is not everyone’s first /home language. Everyone deserves to learn something new other than what they are used to.
What course did you do at iTTi South Africa, and what did you enjoy about it?
I completed iTTi South Africa’s 120-hour TESOL certificate, which is a level 5 certification. I had one absolutely amazing trainer (Lauren), and I enjoyed all the practical work. For example, doing the demo lesson task and teaching my trainer.
Did you get certified to teach English online, abroad, or did you not have any set plans at the time of registration?
I became certified to teach abroad, specifically in Thailand. Before doing registration with iTTi South Africa, I received a job offer in Thailand that was available at the time, and all I needed was my TESOL certificate.
Was it easy settling into your new country of residence?
As a foreigner entering another country, it was challenging and tough in the beginning. I never understood the language or knew my way around the place and province I stayed in. I lived in Songkhla province, Hat yai district, which is the 3rd biggest province in Thailand, but as time went by and I met people, life became a lot easier.
Tell us a bit about the companies/schools that hired you.
Working as a TESOL teacher here in Thailand, I have worked with recruiting agents who are in charge of placing you at a school. Thus far, I have worked with 4 agents only. I have worked for 1 school in the South of Thailand and at 3 schools in the North of Thailand, and I’ve had an amazing time at all of these schools.
What was the interview process like?
My interview process with each school I worked for was different. Some schools simply required an undated resume with teaching experience, while others requested more. Some schools will request a demo lesson as part of the interview process, all depending on the school you are working for. In this entire process, I have met and worked with many people, and I can gladly say that I have never had any problems.
With all your experience, what are your top tips for future students regarding the interview process?
- Be on time
- Dress your best
- Speak with a clear accent and good pronunciation
- Interact as much as possible during your interview process
- Be prepared for anything that might come your way. For example, if a demo lesson is requested as part of the interview process, be polite and agree — NEVER TURN IT DOWN
- Always remember to smile
Any other tips for future iTTi South Africa students?
- Do not fear that you will not find a good job as a TESOL teacher.
- Make sure you know whether you would like to teach online or abroad.
- If you are looking to teach abroad, do the necessary research on the country you want to teach in.
- If you want to teach abroad as a TEFL teacher, Thailand is the place to be. There is an opportunity and place for everyone.
Do you think that it is worth it to become TESOL certified?
Of course, it was worth it! Today I am a certified TESOL teacher teaching and living in Thailand. I have taught at 4 different schools in Thailand, working with all age groups. I am now a permanent kindergarten teacher at an international prep school. Becoming a TESOL teacher provided me with a lot of opportunities, but it also gave me many different chances within a short period of time here in Thailand. My time in Thailand as a teacher thus far has been absolutely amazing and memorable.
What are your future plans with TESOL?
My future plans with TESOL is to continue teaching abroad and helping others improve their language skills. At a later stage, I would like to start a language programme for students globally where English will be the number 1 priority.
Do you want to spread your wings and teach English abroad like Fatima? Contact us today to invest in your future with our 120-Hour TESOL Certification course or 220-Hour Master TESOL certification course. Get your ticket to the world!