Learn and Teach in Thailand!
I just can't recommend UEC TEFL Institute enough; the four-week course I attended has taught me so much about the 'art of teaching' and what it is like to get one's feet wet in the field of... Chang Won Lee
Best decision I've made so far this year!
Submitted by Chang Won Lee - Bangkok | November 11, 2013
I just can't recommend UEC TEFL Institute enough; the four-week course I attended has taught me so much about the 'art of teaching' and what it is like to get one's feet wet in the field of education.
On the first day of class, I walked in to school with half excitement and half fear and worry, as I have never taken a course or a lecture about teaching, and I was not sure whether I would be able to perform well through out the course. A lot of my personal characteristics seemed to go in the opposite direction of what makes a good teacher; being an introvert, I am usually shy, reserved, not outspoken, and fearful of public speaking. On top of that, I felt over burdened from reading the course syllable and what we are to do in the next four weeks. I kept thinking to myself, "Is this what I really want?", "Will I be able to do this?", "Am I wasting money and time from doing this?" By the end of the first day, I was having mixed feelings towards the course.
However, starting from week one until the very last day, the instructors have very well guided me in breaking my old habits and fear through encouragement, constructive feedback and criticism, and 24/7 support. The instructors knew my weaknesses and they tried very hard in helping me change that weaknesses in to my strong points. On top of that, they also found some strong points in me which I could use it to my advantage during teaching practices. The course had a very well-balanced mixture of textbook materials and personal experiences of the instructors, which we were able to absorb it in to our own and learn from them.
The course also touches in good amount the cultural component of teaching in Thailand and living in Thailand. I found this to be particularly helpful and essential, because knowing the culture and behaving in the right manner is very important not only for teachers but for anyone living in a foreign country. Lectures on culture broke many stereotypes I used to have and implanted the essence and the real cultural aspects of Thailand.
I would say the highlight of the course is the actual teaching practice, where we would take on a full 40-minute to 90-minute class on our own. Let's just say, the experience was adrenaline-pumping. It was definitely not easy standing in front of the class and presenting a material; we were to apply the various techniques we have learned in class and be able to present it in a 'teacher-like' manner which did not come easy for me. However, thanks to constructive feedback from the instructors and peers (classmates), I was able to learn from my mistakes and apply new ideas and methods for every new lessons. In the end, the teaching practices proved to be very helpful if not a life-saver for me throughout the course.
The UEC TEFL Institute is located in the heart of Bangkok with easy access to public transportation (or even with personal vehicles). It is almost difficult to not be able to find the institute right away. The institute provides resources such as real textbooks we can use as reference, along with access to printers and copy machines, and not to mention the fully-equipped kitchen where students are provided with lunch and all sorts of coffees and teas (all the foods and drinks need to be paid, and the payments are used for good cause). The institute also provides spacious rooms and WiFi access, which to me was very useful, as I spent many days after class time working on my assignments.
The staff members at UEC TEFL Institute are some of the greatest people I have ever met. The director of the institute and the instructor are helpful and supportive 24/7, not to mention the the valuable knowledge and wisdom they bring in to the class everyday which I enjoyed listening and learning. The instructors are fully prepared to foster our interest in teaching and they do their best in answering all questions and sharing opinions about teaching. With these instructors, a 6-and-a-half hour of class seem rather quick, as the instructors and students engage in various activities, assignment, and discussion.
As the title says it, taking the course at UEC TEFL is by far the best decision I have made so far this year and will probably be the best decision at the end of the year. I strongly recommend this course for anyone interested in getting their feet wet in the field of education, as it will cover the basic, 1-2-3s of education and specifically, teaching English. Even for experienced teachers, the course will prove to be a good refresher and perhaps open their eyes to new methods and ideas that would otherwise be overlooked or ignored at other times. One might think the course fee is too expensive and not worth it; I know this because I had some doubt myself in the intial stage of learning. However, if you are highly determined and persevered in wanting to learn and practice the learned materials, you will come to find out that it is well spent and undoubtedly worth it. It really depends on how you will make use of the course and what you wish to get out from it. For me, I believe I have made a great use of the course and learned way more than I expected to learn which I find it valuable and vital.
Some things money can't buy, luckily some things it can...
Submitted by Bee Quach - Bangkok | November 10, 2013
The quality of teaching and professionalism at UEC is second to none, but what really shines is the experience and hands-on teaching methodology the school offers. Very quickly, it becomes apparent that the mission of the school is to produce great teachers, no matter one's background. People who would get the most rewarding experience from the course would be those who want to make difference. You provide the effort, the school will provide the guidance and means.