CELTA Advice from James Harland

James is a CELTA tutor with IH Almaty

How long were you an EFL teacher, and how long have you been a teacher trainer?

I’ve been teaching English since my CELTA in 2005, and I’ve been a teacher trainer since finishing my DELTA in 2019, including training university EFL teachers, language school teachers, and being a CELTA tutor.

Did you have a different career before EFL?

Yes, I worked for four years in the non-profit sector in London.

What are your hopes/aspirations for your trainees?

I hope that everyone will develop as a confident and effective teacher of EFL, and become more independent and reflective in their teaching practice.

When you were an EFL teacher what did you like most, and how do you bring that into the classroom for your trainees?

I am still an EFL teacher, and the thing I enjoy the most is tailoring particular materials and activities to the needs and interests of my students, and seeing the students grow as confident and effective users of English.

What advice would you give your trainees for successfully completing the course?

Make sure that the CELTA is your number one priority for the time that you are doing it, so that you can give the requisite time and energy to the course, and get the maximum benefit from it.

What advice would you give your trainees for an interesting and rewarding career?

Develop your areas of specialist interest, and see where in the world that takes you. For me that has been business, academic and aviation English, and living in Germany and Kazakhstan, but you can find the mix of content and location to fit your own interests.