Time to Study, Time to Teach

Trying to find the time…

Back in early February I began the process of becoming a certified teacher in the state of Florida through the University of West Florida’s TeacherReady online program.

Today, this certification is becoming a more common requirement with ESL programs globally.  I’m fortunate that this online program is available as it has allowed me to continue teaching while preparing to sit for the three state exams.

Studying college-level courses while teaching full time is no walk in the park though.  It seems like I’m always completing a reading assignment or classroom observation.  Not to mention making corrections to assignments that got kicked back!  Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to blog or vlog as often as I would like, but it’s for a good cause.  Knowing that I want to continue down the path of teaching abroad motivates me during the difficult times.  Trying to study, teach, train, and maintain some semblance of a social life has been a challenge.  One that I’ve definitely embraced, but a challenge nonetheless.

Staying in the game

If you’re currently teaching (or working in another field), this online course is a great choice for serious teachers.  The material has without a doubt added value to my own classroom experience.  I guess that’s the whole point.  If you are working and decide to take the course, just be prepared for the challenge of juggling the two.  Or three or four depending on what else you have going on.  I’ve found myself looking for the pillow more the past few months than previously.  Stay motivated though and it will be a rewarding experience – one that will open up doors for you in the future.



  1. That sounds really difficult! I hope it isn't too stressful.

    My partner is an illustrator and he's really worried he won't be able to draw as much when we move to South Korea. Hopefully we will be able to fit everything in!!

  2. There'll be tons of time to have a hobby like drawing. In fact, being in a new environment will give you new ideas. Plus, there is a huge artistic culture here that I think you'll really enjoy. Have fun with it all!

  3. Avatar Holly Eung says:

    Hi Tom,

    Regarding the state certification, did you feel that it was beneficial in terms of giving you an advantage over other teachers who didn’t have it? Did you felt that more opportunities were made available to you in teaching ESL outside the US since you have obtained the certification?

    • It’s not a question of whether or not it gives you an advantage, it’s a question of if you want the advantage or not. You will be a licensed teacher. In terms of my current teaching situation, I would not have been considered without a license. The highest paying ESL positions in the world right now will generally require a teaching license.

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