Dealing with language school owners.Tips for Teaching English Interviews.
English teaching Interview tip 1: Ask questions about the school, even if you don’t care about the school and are just after a job. Any job!
I’ve worked in all sorts of spheres, but I don’t think I’ve ever come across as much self obsession as that of your average language school owner (LSO). That’s what makes many ESL job interviews so easy: they love the sound of their own voice. All you have to do is ask the right question and then you can sit back and relax as they pass the rest of the interview talking about their school.
Now, I’m all about looking for success in life (as long as I don’t have to work hard to get it) but I’m amazed at how great are many LSO’s sense of their own achievement. It’s as if having a couple of big corporate contracts makes them feel like they themselves are a big corporation. But not even the CEO’s of the big corporations are as self satisfied as some of these LSOs of tiny companies with names like Advanced Business English Training Institute. My God, when they give the profile and history of their school – essentially the narrative of their business over the past x amount of years – they talk with a sense of self achievement like they discovered a cure for AIDS or something. LSOs WAKE UP… You’re running a language school… not Coca cola or the United Nations.
Apart from the above advice, interviewees should also be prepared for…
1) The classic question – what to do with a class of different ESL levels -dealt with in the post http://i-ling.org/teaching-different-levels-in-esl-and-tefl-5-soloutions
2) Why do you like teaching English? Don’t bother trying to claim that you have some inherent love of the present simple.Always focus on the human aspect: teaching ESL is a chance to help an individual develop a skill – learning English – that can enrich their life and further their career; this appeals to you.
3) When in an ESL job interview – never tell the truth, thinking it’ll work in your favour. E.g – (“to be honest, it’s the only job I can do in this country…” or “yeah,I’ll be gone in six months.”)
Bye bye. Happy interviewing.
A more sober analysis of ESL interviews can be found at http://www.madridteacher.com/articles/top-10-list.htm