5 Skills Needed to be a TEFL Teacher

Every day, more and more people fly out to the country of their dreams to live and teach English as a foreign language. As teacher, it must be your priority to ensure your students receive the best education possible. Whilst the TEFL industry grows and grows, the standards that schools expect from their teachers rise. To make sure you meet these standards, book a highly accredited TEFL course with us.

What are the skills I need?


As a TEFL teacher, like any teacher, you must be able to communicate with your pupils so as to understand the problems they may have, to get your point across effectively, and enthuse your pupils. This may sound like nothing, but it is the most important part of teaching. It’s especially important in TEFL where you may face a slight language barrier with pupils so expression through tone and body language plays a very significant role.


It’s no good being able to get on with your students if you have no idea what you’re talking about. Planning lessons, revising your knowledge, and keeping yourself passionate are key to being a good teacher. If you seem confused or unsure about yourself it can be off-putting for students who may lose faith in you. Just remember to plan ahead and you’ll do fine!


Adaptability is absolutely necessary in the TEFL world. Whether you’re moving schools or staying with the same class, you must be ready and able to respond to change. No two schools will be same, particularly in more rural areas where there isn’t such a set standard. Class sizes can vary from a handful of pupils to 30 or more. Skill level can differ wildly, too. So, you must be ready and willing to take on any unforeseen challenges.


You must be empathetic with your pupils, no matter their age. This sort of ties in with communication skills as you need to be able listen to your students as well as talk to them. If they have a problem and you fail to understand why they feel a certain way then you will find it difficult to get through to them. As a foreigner you may look or act a bit strange to them, but you mustn’t take offence to this. Keep in mind: perspective is key and try to understand your students’ point of view.


Obviously, you must be confident enough to speak in front of a group of people. If you find yourself getting nervous on your first time, don’t worry, that’s normal. It’s a cliché, but practice really does make perfect and if you know what you’re going to say in front of your class it really does boost your confidence.

To conclude, a TEFL teacher must be prepared, confident, and empathetic. Prepare for anything and plan your classes. This will reduce stress and make your time as a teacher far easier. With all the above qualities you’ll be sure to make a great TEFL teacher. Don’t worry if you don’t think you have some, or any, of these qualities – all are trainable and easy to acquire if you apply yourself.

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