You know you’re an EFL teacher when …

1 You listen to songs, mainly paying attention to the lyrics for examples of language use you can practise in class.

2 You have a huge bank of useful but interesting general knowledge, entirely gleaned from coursebooks.

3 You gesticulate wildly all the time when speaking to people, something you learnt when trying to explain concepts such as ‘put off’ or ‘defeated’.

...or 'four'. Intervarsity by Ian Wilson CC BY 2.0

…or ‘four’.
Intervarsity by Ian Wilson

4 Your favourite type of YouTube clip is anything under three minutes which you can use in class.

5 You have never been without blu-tack since the start of your career.

6292790874_70ccbea86c_o

Notebook Snail by Kurtis Garbut CC BY 2.0

6 You feel bad about what you put your teachers through in the past.

7 You’re no stranger to unpaid work, or as your boss likes to call it, ‘Good for you professional development’.

8 The words ‘teenage social programme’ strike fear into your very soul.

'Right, who's up for the grammar museum? Anyone? Anyone??' The teenagers fucina controvento by Palliativo CC BY-SA 2.0

‘Right, who’s up for the grammar museum? Anyone? Anyone??’
The teenagers fucina controvento by Palliativo CC BY-SA 2.0

9 You have been asked at least once in your career when you plan to get a ‘proper job’.

10 When you say ‘PPP’ it’s not because you really need the loo.

Nor is it a very mean vegetable ration. Peas and Pod by timlewisnm CC BY 2.0

Nor is it a very mean vegetable ration.
Peas and Pod by timlewisnm CC BY 2.0

11 You’ve pulled weird faces and made ludicrous sounds in front of rooms full of people, all in the name of ‘teaching pronunciation’.

12 You take your work (but not yourself) very seriously.

Do you have anything to add to this list? If so, I’d love to hear your ideas in the comments below.

Damian Willians

I'm an ELT author/writer and have written several books and digital material for various publishers (Amazon author page - https://www.amazon.co.uk/-/e/B00EG71K1Q). I'm also a member of the committee for the IATEFL Materials Writers Special Interest Group (MaWSIG). After living and working in Brazil for ten years, I'm now based in London.

4 Comments
  • Ceri
    Posted at 07:44h, 15 maio Responder

    and you can’t walk past an interesting sign in any language without taking a photo of it 😉

  • Teresa Carvalho
    Teresa Carvalho
    Posted at 22:10h, 22 maio Responder

    I checked all the boxes but I still can add one more:

    13 You find yourself planning an entire lesson while you’re watching a movie just because of a single scen, a character, or a dialogue.

    This is a great post, Damian.

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