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What are academy jobs like?

 
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robinnn



Joined: 24 May 2006
Posts: 78
Location: Spain

PostPosted: Sun Jul 22, 2012 10:42 am    Post subject: What are academy jobs like? Reply with quote

Yes, itís me again. Iím basically doing almost nothing this summer but research on working in Spain. So it looks like Iím off to Spain this September to find a job and do a part time CELTA in November in Barcelona. Before I get qualified my Spanish teacher told me I can work in academies. Now, I've got tons of experience teaching kids but I've never really taught adults and I've not taught in depth grammar before. What will be expected of me in an academy position? How large will the classes be? Is there a lot of freedom as to how you approach the lessons? Is training provided? (I'm guessing "no") Are a lot of ESL teachers in academies unqualified / inexperienced? Are academy jobs a good place to start? Can I avoid teaching adults altogether until I get qualified?

Sorry if anyone already asked these questions but the search function doesn't seem to be working.

Thanks
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pr455



Joined: 08 May 2011
Posts: 135
Location: MADRID, SPAIN

PostPosted: Sun Jul 22, 2012 12:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi,

In a nutshell go to this website and go straight to the source:

http://www.madridteacher.com/pdfs/english-academies-in-madrid.htm

and your questions will be answered there. To read the profile of academies, click where it says "On madrtidTeacher.com."

Your questions are very subjective and everyone has personal experiences with academies.

Suerte,

Shawn


Last edited by pr455 on Sun Jul 22, 2012 5:22 pm; edited 1 time in total
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robinnn



Joined: 24 May 2006
Posts: 78
Location: Spain

PostPosted: Sun Jul 22, 2012 2:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

thanks for the link!
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jonniboy



Joined: 18 Jun 2006
Posts: 674
Location: Riga, Latvia

PostPosted: Tue Jul 24, 2012 4:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Actually the bulk of work in academies will be with kids and teenagers, not adults. Though like a lot of teachers I've usually found adults much easier to teach since they don't have the discipline or motivation issues that come with the younger ones. This is one reason why I'm sitting in Latvia now dithering (as usual!) over whether to go back to Spain in the Autumn. People will have different experiences with this but I've usually found academies an ideal way to start and it avoids most of the cancellation issues that you'll have if you try and live off private students, at least until you establish yourself in the market.
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pr455



Joined: 08 May 2011
Posts: 135
Location: MADRID, SPAIN

PostPosted: Tue Jul 24, 2012 5:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jonniboy,

The majority of academies here in Madrid deal with adults, since the bulk of their money comes from working with companies. With the bilingual program having entered high schools, some academies are cashing in on that, and only in the afternoons and weekends, of course. This is not to contradict what you have said, but I am speaking about Madrid, since I know nothing about the TEFL environment in Valencia.

My experiences with academies have been OK, so that's why I now only do one class with them from time to time. The bulk of my work comes from being an English Language Assistant at a school and doing teacher training as well. I may have more work with a publishing company as well. I like having diversity when it comes to teaching.

I am wishing you the best in your decision. I will be making a decision about 2013 myself as well. Life, oh life! Oh, life!

Suerte,

Shawn
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jonniboy



Joined: 18 Jun 2006
Posts: 674
Location: Riga, Latvia

PostPosted: Tue Jul 24, 2012 8:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, I'd forgotten that. Sure it will be different in the two bigger cities compared to Valencia, so that's something people need to factor in. In Valencia probably only 25-30% of the hours would be with adults in the average academy. Maybe the OP wants to take my job there instead? Laughing

As to my decisions, Latvia's advantages are year round work, free accommo for me and a more adult oriented teaching market, though lifestyle and climate wise for me, it sucks. One new factor in the mix is that I finally got round to doing a CELTA course and will finish it on Friday and the temptation to put it to instant use by exploring pastures new is very big. What are you considering doing yourself for 2013?
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pr455



Joined: 08 May 2011
Posts: 135
Location: MADRID, SPAIN

PostPosted: Tue Jul 24, 2012 11:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jonniboy,

I am considering other countries, or even going back to the USA to get an administrative job at a university there. I am getting burnt out with teaching and I need a job where I can leave the job on the job and go home at the end of the day. Teaching has been great, but I never envisioned myself teaching for the rest of my life. I am looking for a new challenge in life now.

I know that I can always teach a Spanish class at university so I don't get rusty, but one class and nothing more. It would be a great balance to work in an administrative position and then teach a night class. Extra pay, hehe.

Looking at what this school year brings because it's not looking pretty for Spain at all. Crying or Very sad

Shawn
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robinnn



Joined: 24 May 2006
Posts: 78
Location: Spain

PostPosted: Wed Jul 25, 2012 12:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the additional info. Are academy classes mostly paid for by the students' employers then? That would take the pressure off me a little. I'm doing all I can now to prepare for adult classes but there's only so much I can do pre-CELTA.
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jonniboy



Joined: 18 Jun 2006
Posts: 674
Location: Riga, Latvia

PostPosted: Wed Jul 25, 2012 4:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

pr455 wrote:
Looking at what this school year brings because it's not looking pretty for Spain at all. Crying or Very sad

Shawn


That ironically enough is a factor in the "pro" column of the move back to Valencia decision sheet. I've a decent offer to work there and there's a possibility that after this year, Spain will be economically unfeasible (government has to increase taxes a lot more, country withdraws from Euro etc.) So this could be one of the last times when I'm offered what is for Spain a reasonable salary. Doing a year there and then heading somewhere else is what a lot of people are suggesting.
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jonniboy



Joined: 18 Jun 2006
Posts: 674
Location: Riga, Latvia

PostPosted: Wed Jul 25, 2012 4:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

robinnn wrote:
Thanks for the additional info. Are academy classes mostly paid for by the students' employers then? That would take the pressure off me a little. I'm doing all I can now to prepare for adult classes but there's only so much I can do pre-CELTA.


Again speaking about Valencia, classes in the academy were mostly paid for by the students themselves. In company obviously is usually paid for by the company but don't look on that as an easier ride. The company will obviously look for some return on their investment and if your performance isn't sufficient that can jeopardise the academy's contract with the company. Not good for them and therefore bad for you.
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pr455



Joined: 08 May 2011
Posts: 135
Location: MADRID, SPAIN

PostPosted: Fri Jul 27, 2012 10:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

jonniboy wrote:
pr455 wrote:
Looking at what this school year brings because it's not looking pretty for Spain at all. Crying or Very sad

Shawn


That ironically enough is a factor in the "pro" column of the move back to Valencia decision sheet. I've a decent offer to work there and there's a possibility that after this year, Spain will be economically unfeasible (government has to increase taxes a lot more, country withdraws from Euro etc.) So this could be one of the last times when I'm offered what is for Spain a reasonable salary. Doing a year there and then heading somewhere else is what a lot of people are suggesting.


It seems that we are on the same page, hehe. I know that I can go back to my school, do more teacher training and give conferences, so I am fine for the upcoming school year. I will look for signs as what to do for the 2013 - 2014 year. I am looking for a challenge which will take my skills to the next level.
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pr455



Joined: 08 May 2011
Posts: 135
Location: MADRID, SPAIN

PostPosted: Fri Jul 27, 2012 10:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

robinnn wrote:
Thanks for the additional info. Are academy classes mostly paid for by the students' employers then? That would take the pressure off me a little. I'm doing all I can now to prepare for adult classes but there's only so much I can do pre-CELTA.


Well, I am going to be very frank here, speaking of Madrid, of course. The pressure will alwyas be on you because if you don't help students succeed, you will be let go, and if they feel that you are not prepraed and can't answer their questions, you will find yourself without a class.

You have to make classes fun and lively, always letting the students know what they are going to learn, why they are learning it and how it's going to help them in the future.
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robinnn



Joined: 24 May 2006
Posts: 78
Location: Spain

PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2012 10:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

pr455 wrote:
robinnn wrote:
Thanks for the additional info. Are academy classes mostly paid for by the students' employers then? That would take the pressure off me a little. I'm doing all I can now to prepare for adult classes but there's only so much I can do pre-CELTA.


Well, I am going to be very frank here, speaking of Madrid, of course. The pressure will alwyas be on you because if you don't help students succeed, you will be let go, and if they feel that you are not prepraed and can't answer their questions, you will find yourself without a class.

You have to make classes fun and lively, always letting the students know what they are going to learn, why they are learning it and how it's going to help them in the future.


Please don't misunderstand me, I am in no way looking for an easy ride I just don't have a lot of confidence in teaching adults. If someone had no experience teaching kids they would rather teach small classes with no parents watching because it's lower pressure and a better position to start in. That's all I was saying. Smile
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pr455



Joined: 08 May 2011
Posts: 135
Location: MADRID, SPAIN

PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2012 1:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

robinnn,

Basically, you have to go in with confidence and plan your lessons the night before. Just because you don't have much experience working with adults doesn't mean that that should stop you or even frighten you in any way.

Teaching isn't an easy ride in any aspect because there are so many unpredictable factors involved, but being prepared with a fun and lively lesson that allows students to talk and interact with each other is the way to go. Why not buy some books on teaching or better yet, do a search for websites to start getiing some ideas of what you can do in the classroom to maintain an enjoyable atmosphere, one in which students want to learn and come excited for the next day's lesson.

You can do it and you have to believe that you can do it as well.

Shawn
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robinnn



Joined: 24 May 2006
Posts: 78
Location: Spain

PostPosted: Sun Jul 29, 2012 9:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks!
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