Wednesday, 30 May 2012

ITTP Prague TEFL: Latest Onsite TEFL Review

Completed the ittp 4 week course in Prague in April 2012 - loved it! Had a great time and all the staff took really good care of us from beginning to end. I'm also glad that I chose the accommodation option, because the apartment was fantastic. A few other of the trainees had decided to find their own rooms and were slightly jealous when they saw what we had to go back to each day. I particularly loved the fact that on the one hand you were at the Mustek within 25 minutes but on the other you were in a national park in the opposite direction within 25 minutes also. Divoka Sarka is simply awesome and an outstanding area of natural beauty. Extremely safe too, which was always going to be one of my main concerns. Oh, and I'm usually very picky with where I stay so if you think this review is written by someone who is easily satisfied then you are very wrong. The trainers and staff were all great and Neville was particularly helpful with my trip over planning and helping us get our internet set up when we moved into the apartment. oh yes, if you do choose the ittp apartment then there is no actual stationary wifi in the room. Instead (and infinitely better) you get a funky flash drive which goes into the usb port of your notebook, meaning that we had internet access for the whole month in the apartment, in the park, on the ride down the hill on the tram to classes. Everywhere. This was SO useful because it meant we were able to draw on internet resources for lesson planning in the shade of a park tree, as opposed to having to go back to the room and work there with a stationary modem. We were the first group in the new ittp apartment and all 3 of us were completely satisfied. Great location. Great apartment. Great price. On the course we had plenty of language students to practice on. There were a few blank faces in my first practice class, but it all came together by the end of the month. I probably didn't read their website so well because I really didn't think we would be teaching SO many classes. I had assumed we would simply be teaching each other (like I heard lots of schools do). I taught 4 whole hours at the ittp building, 7 hours at the children's school, and 8 hours with my one on one student Michaela. Michaela's lessons took place at Unicredit Bank. Awesome! :) There is a downside to this review though. Prague was great for partying at the weekends, but you have to be careful not to get distracted in the week too. A few fellow trainees didn't seem to make a distinction between the week and weekend. Because they partied too much and missed classes they received lower certificate grades and at the end they came out a little bitter. I hear they have work too but I can't help imagine how long they will be able to hold those jobs down for. I think ittp and all tefl schools actually, should actively warn the young people who take their courses not to go overboard with the partying. Hey, I like a wild night out like the next person but when you travel abroad it's easy to take every day as a holiday and some people can begin to spiral. there were actually 2 trainees on the course who got a bit out of control with their night's out and who are probably waking up today with another hangover and a run for the tram to make teaching classes late. I know this isn't the school's fault. But this is an area which I think the industry in general could look at more. Everyone of our class got teaching work in Prague but for the first few weeks the hours were a bit thin on the ground. It was only until the end of the first month after graduating from ittp that we did have either full time or almost full time hours. Having spoken with other teachers I found out that this is the norm so make sure to calculate this factor into your budget plan. For that first month you will get by but you just won't have that full time wage benefit. I teach for a large language school in the city and I now have around 25 hours a week, which is standard. They pay me 250 Kc for 45 minutes but I then need to pay any taxes on top of that because I went the trade license route. It's about middle of the road for Prague but I can definitely recommend the school to work for because their teacher support is EXCELLENT. Overall I rate ittp 10 stars. You get at least what you expect and maybe more. Take the ittp course. You’ll enjoy the course and Prague!

Sara Boulder