you planning to do the four-week Cambridge CELTA TEFL course?
I did the
course in May 2009 at the Manchester
Academy of English
and here's my
anyone thinking of doing it - they will tell you it's intensive, they
will tell you it's hard work, they will tell you to entirely give up
all your social life for the duration of the course. They are not
It's all of that. It's also a damn good course and well worth the
money. If anyone wants more info from someone who's been there and done
that, drop me an
Here's another tip - there is a book called "Concept
Questions and Timelines" by Graham Workman
This was not on the recommended books list for the course, nor was it
in the school's
library. In fact I didn't find out about its existence until nearly the
end of the course when it was too late. As far as I know it's the only
one of its kind, and I would
strongly recommend anyone doing the course to get it. If you don't know
what CCQs are now, believe me they will be haunting your dreams by the
end of the course!
With UK Plc sinking into
the depths of recession, sleaze and nannyism I have decided to take
life by the throat and head off back to Africa, this time for a whole
year. It has been many months in the planning, during which I have done
a four-week intensive course in teaching English as a foreign language
(see panel), cleared the house of junk some of which dated back to the
seventies, floored the loft, pumped out the cellar, and packed
everything that's left into cardboard boxes, but I am finally ready. My
rusksack is packed, my house is let (or will be soon I hope) and my
flight to Lilongwe, Malawi is booked for 01/01/10 - the first day of
the first year of the rest of my life.
Having decided to take this plunge, one of the hardest things was
deciding what to do when I got there. There are any number of voluntary
organisations all over Africa doing all sorts of projects, most of whom
want a fairly hefty chunk of money as well as your time. I had
already decided that I would like to get away from the whole IT thing,
and as I love the English language (a dying skill these days) and get
on well with kids (although I would never teach in England) it seemed
like a good idea to teach English in schools.
Malawi seemed a good place to start, as I know the country reasonably
well, and I remembered that I had come across some volunteers when I
was at the
Lake Of Stars festival in 2006
. So it is that I have signed
up for three months with Ripple
based at Mwaya Beach on the
shores of beautiful Lake Malawi.
improve the standard of education and healthcare,
preserve and sustainably develop the environment, and
create opportunities for the local community
Mwaya on the northern lakeshore of Lake Malawi
The school year in Malawi is
different from ours, consisting of three three-month terms starting in
January, and with it being September by the time I booked, I was
advised to hang on a bit longer and come at the start of the year. As a
result, I am now booked to fly to Lilongwe on Friday 01/01/10, arriving
on Saturday leaving just time for a steak at Don Brioni's before I
catch the new 'luxury' Axa bus up the lake to Mwaya Beach on Sunday 3rd
in time for the first day of term on Monday 4th - it's going to be a
baptism of fire!
Watch this space to find
I get on.
I've got myself an Asus eee 910 webbook computer to take
with me so
that I can try to keep this web diary up-to-date as I go.