61 reviews of AVSE-TESOL

Review 61 of 61 AVSE-TESOL

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My name is Olha, I am 29 and come from Ukraine.

As an English teacher with 8 years of experience I had a choice either to get an international certificate in my home country or abroad. I opted for more challenging and crucial decision – to do it abroad. And never regretted it even for a minute because the moment I stepped into AVSE it seemed like home. I was supported by all means and in every way possible. Just imagine, I came here, to Saigon, to study and also brought my family: my husband and my 2-year-old daughter so you can imagine what “stepping out of the comfort zone” means to me.

From the moment we went out of the airport we were met by the academic officer from AVSE and it was good that in the middle of the night and in a foreign country somebody was waiting for you and accompanied you to the accommodation. We lived in a western-type accommodation with all the necessary modern conveniences and I could concentrate on my studies without having to resolve the household stuff.

As far as the course was concerned, my wonderful, helpful and knowledgeable teacher, Mr. Lee Porter, was able to get me interested in English teaching again since after one taught for some time one can get a bit disappointed and less enthusiastic about all this teaching stuff. Apart from that, Mr. Porter is a person with excellent sense of humour that made our classes full of fun and excitement. From the first class I was able to get a clear idea of what was expected of me, the course was very informative and quite intense, I would say, but I consider intensity to be a good thing as far as one’s career is concerned. We obtained hands-on experience in giving classes without too much theory which for me was good because I had more than enough of theory after 8 years of university (5 years to get an MA and then 3 more years to complete post-graduate studies). We had classes with “real” Vietnamese students which is a very efficient way to get to know the people you are going to work with, get to know the cultural specificities and thus, adapt your prior experience to English teaching to Vietnamese kids. All the classes we gave were evaluated and the feedback was provided in a very kind, helpful, friendly and just way.

Regarding the lesson planning, a lot of time was devoted to it and the AVSE staff helped greatly in designing the lessons. I knew about giving classes to teenagers and adults and had no problems with these age groups but when it came to teaching 4-6-year-olds I was at my wits’ end and it was the moment I needed most help and AVSE teachers were always there and spent hours with us until the last student and until the last question.

Most of all I liked arts-and-crafts classes because I know how much kids love these things and how “hungry” they are to do this activity in English classroom.

As for the job offer, I completed my course on Thursday and next day I signed my first contract. My family and I were looking for an environmentally friendly zone for our daughter and we opted for relocation to the city called Bien Hoa, near Saigon. So my first job where I am right now is not far from Saigon and I can come there when needed. The Director of Corporate Affairs, Jane, was very helpful when it came to job seeking and I took her advice in choosing the job (I was offered various) and do not regret it.

I also had an opportunity to meet the Managing Director of AVSE, Mr. Peter Goudge, who was very helpful and supportive when my family and I most needed it.

Also I would like to express profound gratitude to all AVSE staff. All of them are excellent professionals and love their job.

I can definitely say that the experience of coming to another country and teaching here has turned my life on its ear but AVSE was always there in the moments of confusion and doubt. Do not hesitate to opt for this wonderful life-changing experience since you’ll be grateful for it.

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