Tips from a Trainer – Part Two: Preparing for the IDELT™ Course
This post was written by Denise Kray
I signed up for the IDELT™, how do I prepare?
Are you ready?! To assess your readiness for successfully completing the IDELT TEFL teacher-training course, please ask yourself the following questions carefully and thoughtfully:
- Are you prepared for the intensive nature of the IDELT?
- Do you have any personal or work related obligations or plans which may prevent you from completing course work effectively and meeting course requirements? Are you prepared to refrain from these for the duration of the course including weekends?
- Do you have any medical or physical challenges that may affect your success on the course? If so, are you prepared to share these with course trainers in order for us to help you be successful?
- How do you think the following (if applicable) will contribute to your success on the course and in your future teaching positions?
- Area of study/degree(s)
- Work experience
- Foreign language skills
- Travel experience
- Teaching experience
1) Timing is everything! The IDELT™ course is intensive and you need to be focused for four weeks.
Trainers cover a huge amount of material in a short period of time and expect you to demonstrate what you are learning almost immediately by teaching classes to real English language learners. You have to pass all course components to receive your certification. IDELT™ trainers want you to be aware that the course is mentally demanding and time consuming. To get the most out of the course and pass, you need to approach the course knowing these expectations!
- It’s a good idea to take the course when you are able (mentally and physically) to devote 100% to the course – ready to work both in class and outside of class time (i.e. evenings and weekends). Make sure you take any other commitments into consideration when choosing course dates. Weddings to attend? Part-time work? Tutoring? Music lessons?
- Plan to take the course when you don’t have to work, take other kinds of classes, deal with a serious health condition/illness, or recover from one, etc.
- Be prepared to tell friends and family that you probably won’t be available during the course. Again, attending class, lesson planning, written assignments, eating and sleeping consume most of your time.
- If possible, plan to arrive on location a few days early or stay a few days after the course to see the sights/visit local attractions.
2) Location, location, location! BridgeTEFL offers the IDELT™ at several locations.
If you want to take the course before you leave the country, take the course in Denver, Colorado (our headquarters). If you want to teach in South America, consider taking the course from one of our three locations in SA. Regardless, think about your own level of comfort – where you will stay (i.e. sleep, live), where you will eat, how far away the training center is, what native language is spoken, etc. Think through the details and make arrangements that you can ‘live’ with!
3) Stay in communication!
Once you’ve enrolled and paid your deposit, you receive pre-course information from BridgeTEFL staff. Make sure you open and read all initial correspondence (i.e. course confirmation and preparation documents). There is important information concerning your housing arrangements, your specific course location, and any fees or further steps you need to take in the enrollment process.
4) Pay your tuition as soon as possible!
Once you’ve paid your tuition in full, you start communication with your course trainers. You’ll receive an email that outlines what to bring to your course (binder, laptop, etc), where to find course materials you need to complete the course requirements, and how to prepare for the first day of the course. The sooner you start reading the course text, the better!
5) Help, my grammar stinks!
Understandably, trainees are often nervous about their grammar knowledge. Although you will discuss and participate in language awareness sessions (i.e. reviewing English grammar rules), we suggest brushing up on your own grammar and language awareness (if possible) before you start the course. You receive a free one-year subscription to GrammarAdvisor.com when you pay your tuition in full.
‘Tips’ are from Denver, Colorado BridgeTEFL Trainers: Denise Kray, Laura Greenwood and Joshua Yardley. See our previous Tips from Trainers – Part One: Choosing the IDELT Course. And stay tuned for more! Part Three: Surviving, I mean, Getting the Most From, the IDELT™ Course.