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Welcome to ELTS’ CELTA blog!

May 28, 2010

Welcome to the ELTSCELTA Blog. This blog is specially designed to showcase the successes of trainees from Swansea University’s Professional CELTA Course and to update present and past trainees with job opportunities, news and EFL information.


FREE writing workshop for asylum seekers and refugees – Dylan Thomas Centre, Swansea Oct 4th 2017

September 22, 2017

FREE EVENT with reimbursed travel*

October 4th 2017, 12:30 PM – 2:30 PM

Children welcome

We are very excited to offer a FREE writing workshop for asylum seekers and refugees with the published poet, dramatist and novelist, Eric Ngalle Charles. Having come to the UK in 1999, Eric now runs writing workshops that specifically consider the trauma of the refugee experience.

Eric is an experienced tutor with an impressive dedication to the arts. In collaboration with Hafan books, he has co-edited and published several poetry anthologies by refugees, migrants and indigenous artists. His memoirs are due to be published by Parthian books in 2018. He is also the founder of Black Entertainment Wales, an organisation that showcases the work of BME artists.

* Bus tickets will be reimbursed at reception after the completion of the workshop. Taxis and other modes of transport will not be refunded. Swansea area only.

To book your place please call 01792463980 or visit

The Dylan Thomas Centre, Somerset Place, SA1 1RR


Jack in South Korea – his first-hand account

September 22, 2017

Jack studied the Cambridge CELTA with ELTS in July 2016, and has been kind enough to send an account of his first job in Korea and a lot of interesting pictures. Here are his thoughts on the experience – and as you can read, a rewarding and productive time:

After some visa trouble and having been awake for almost 30 hours (to anyone who can sleep on flights I salute you) I arrived at Incheon international airport to begin a new life here in South Korea. Still though, I needed to get to my city. I arrived in Daegu the morning after, still tired, and met the EPIK co-ordinater for the city.  She took me to the regional office where I would meet my new co-workers for at least the next year. Nervous? Yes, but excited and in all honesty I was so tired I couldn’t concentrate on much else other than staying awake.

I had started my application in November and it was now March. The process to apply for the EPIK program here in Korea is rather long winded but for those of us who have gone through any CELTA program it is a breeze. A lesson plan, a Skype interview both a relative ease. The paperwork after is the tricky part but nothing so hard as to be called strenuous.

I was now told where my new schools would be, taken to my new apartment, around 10 mins from downtown Daegu and 5 from the schools and also shopping with some of my new co-workers. They told where to report to during the week and what they would like me to teach for my first lesson. Was I nervous? Maybe, but in all honesty I just wanted first to go to bed and then start teaching!

The first day at my new school was a plethora of excited 6-12 year old Korean children occasionally mitigated by a curious teacher asking where I was from or telling me “Handsome boy”. Being from the UK every time I heard these words I died a little on the inside, complements are scary.  I met the principle to the tone of some bad Korean on my part and “handsome boy” on hers. This was it, time to start my life here in Korea and, so far, it’s been 놀랄 만해요!!!

I work for the office of education here in Daegu and was recruited through EPIK. EPIK puts teachers into public schools all over the country from the big city to the smallest village school. I work in the city of Daegu, in fact the hottest city in Korea which I found out only after I got here! I teach 24 lessons a week to children from age 8-11 but I have friends who teach in middle schools, some high schools as well as English centers. I always teach alongside a Korean co-teacher. They have been great to work along side and all of the teachers I work with are incredibly friendly and knowledgeable. 

For the 1st year teachers here you earn a minimum $2000 dollars and then depending on experience where you live and qualifications you can go up to $2700 a month. Cost of living here is really low I find myself being able to save at least 1/3 of this even on months I have been travelling every weekend. Bills are around $40 a month and the only really expensive thing here is fruit which is a minor annoyance compared to what one gets back.

Living here in Korea has been *insert superlative here*.  I really can’t describe the fun I’m having. I am involved with sports teams and volunteer with north Korean defectors. I take Korean classes twice a week and go to language exchanges on Saturdays. I travel a lot, at least 2 weekends in every month and have been lucky enough to meet many wonderful locals and expats that live here. The food is great the people are, in the most part, friendly and the weather here has been wonderful; however I’m yet to experience winter and have been told it gets down to -12.

It can’t all be roses and not everyone here gets the same experience I get. There are lots of private schools here that don’t offer the same benefits the public schools do and the holidays are not as good. With regards to EPIK and the public schools you spend a lot of the school holidays ‘desk warming’ as you yourself only get 2 weeks off in summer and winter whereas the kids are off for 1/2 months. So, if you’re not teaching camps you will be sitting at your desk all day. Keeping in touch with home is also an annoyance with time zones and work schedules I can call once a week if I’m lucky. Also and worst of all……AMERICAN ENGLISH!

All in all though so far I have loved my time here. I hope I can persuade a few more people to join me because I can not talk highly enough of my time here! I’ve liked it so much I’ll be signing on for another year even if I have to play “soccer” for a few more months.

Swansea Oxfam events coming soon…

September 1, 2017

Swansea Oxfam events coming soon…

Thursday 21st September

Poets For Peace event to mark UN International Day of Peace

Poetry and Music in Oxfam, Castle Street, Swansea, from 7.30-10pm.

Free Admission. Donations to Oxfam, please!


Sunday 24th September – Roald Dahl Day

at The Waterfront Museum from 12-4

Oxfam Children’s Book Stall and loads of Roald Dahl-related fun activities!

Sunday 1st October – Karen Gemma Brewer’s “Seeds From A Dandelion”

Direct from Edinburgh Fringe Festival to Swansea Fringe Festival!

A show featuring poetry, music and storytelling… from 11.30-12.30 in Oxfam, Castle Street, Swansea.

Free Admission.


Friday 29th  September – Sunday 1st October – “Books On Tour!”

As part of Swansea Fringe Festival, we’ll be hiding FREE music books

along Castle Street and High Street for you to find!


Saturday 7th  and Sunday 8th October – Book Swap

at The Waterfront Museum. 11-4 each day.


Sunday 8th October – Fun Palace

at The Waterfront Museum. A celebration of science, art and learning! 12-4.


Monday 16th October – The Landore Wizard!

The return of the Mighty Landore Wizard with his keyboard classics! From 12.30 in shop.


Tuesday 17th October – Valley Folk Club Takeover Oxfam!

A Folk Club in the shop! Doors open 7pm. Suggested donation £2.


Saturday 28th October – Local History Book Fair

at Swansea Museum. Oxfam will be there with lots of Local History bargains!


Watch out for updates on 

Oxfam Castle Street Swansea – Facebook

Oxfam – Castle Street – Twitter


Teacher of general and technical English, Soran University, Iraq

August 31, 2017

Bengin Masih Awdel, the Dean of the Faculty of Engineering at Soran University, in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq has written with brief details of a long term offer of employment:

“We are looking for someone to teach general and technical English at Soran University in Kurdistan Region of Iraq with a very good salary. This is the faculty’s link:

Start date: October 2017

Accommodation: will be provided by the University

Travel: 1 return economy flight ticket per academic year

Condition of employment: long term contract

For further details / application please contact:

Bengin Masih Awdel, PhD


Faculty of Engineering

Soran University

Kurdistan Region-Iraq

Tel: +964 750 4456901

Tel: +44 7858387864


‘Integration not Demonisation’

August 31, 2017

The All Party Parliamentary Group report on Social Integration ‘Integration not Demonisation’ was published on the 27th August 2017. Section 4 of this report is of special interest to ESOL practitioners since it deals with the importance of linguistic integration of adult migrants. The discussions in other sections are various, and primarily cover the roles of central and regional authorities in developing opportunities for employment, education generally, citizenship training and social integration

Section 4 is entitled: Building a Britain in which everyone can speak English

Here are some key extracts. They are wide ranging, but even if only partially implemented would have a tremendous affect on the ESOL landscape in the UK – clearly for the better for our communities and newcomers to our communities as well as the needs of employers and the wider economy.

  • Ministers should develop a new strategy for the promotion of English language
    learning reflecting the guiding principle that no one should be able to live in our
    country for a considerable length of time without speaking English.
  • The ability to speak English should be viewed as a right extended to everyone in our society no matter what their background or income level.
  • In order to break down cultural barriers to English language learning, the government should introduce a requirement that immigrants arriving in the UK without the ability to speak the language should be enrolled on ESOL classes. These programmes should, additionally, be used so as to provide new arrivals with an understanding of national and local customs, traditions and British values.
  • The government should conduct an extensive consultation including immigrants and ESOL programme providers in order to explore what topics these cultural orientation courses should cover as well as how the requirement for newcomers with no English to attend them should be enforced.
  • The government’s new English language strategy must include a degree of direct
  • investment in language classes reflecting both the scale of the challenge we face
    in building a Britain in which everyone speaks English and the level of importance
    attached to this project by Britons across the political spectrum.
  • Policymakers should introduce an income-contingent advanced learning loan system for English language programmes, through which programme participants could defer payments until they begin to earn a salary above a certain threshold – enabling  immigrants, including those who are unemployed, to undertake training with no or little upfront cost.
  • The government’s national strategy for the promotion of the English language should  be shaped so as to support the growth of vocationally-focused ESOL programmes aimed at providing immigrants with a grounding in appropriate industrial language and unlocking skills learned abroad.
  • Ministers should set out plans to amend existing vocational courses commonly
    accessed by migrants, such as the NVQ in social care, to include a greater focus on
    English language learning.
  • Policymakers should offer employers financial incentives for the provision of in-work ESOL programmes. This should include the introduction of a quality mark to recognise employers which effectively support English language learning. Policymakers should, in addition, explore whether employers which demonstrate a substantive commitment to language training might be made entitled to employer National Insurance Contribution discounts.
  • In recognition of the diverse experiences and language training needs of individual
    immigrants and of distinct demographic groups, the government should design its
    English language strategy so to promote ESOL programmes of a range of styles and
    forms – including both college and community-based schemes.
  • Policymakers should explore where there is a need for an ‘intermediate offer’ aimed at language learners who have participated in a community-based programme but aren’t yet ready to progress to a college-based course.
  • The government should outline plans for the increased provision of non-formal
    language learning schemes which enable immigrants to practice their English through conversing with members of their host community.
  • Its English language strategy should include measures aimed at drawing more
    volunteers into language learning programmes – including in order to serve as teaching assistants within formal ESOL courses and to participate in non-formal schemes.
  • A central plank of the government’s national strategy for the promotion of the English language should comprise of plans to integrate the provision of ESOL with that of other public services, including children’s centres and schools.
  • Ministers should introduce a new statutory duty on local authorities to co-ordinate and optimise ESOL provision in their areas – sign-posting learners to suitable provision and facilitating a positive dialogue between language training providers.
  • The government’s English language strategy should set out rigorous national
    standards and ambitious area-by-area targets for ESOL provision.
    The government should grow and maintain a varied ESOL delivery landscape
    incorporating national charities in addition to the local organisations and colleges which will continue to form the bedrock of language training provision. To this end, its English language strategy should include measures recognising the enhanced capacity for low-cost provision, innovation and quality assurance of larger delivery organisations.
  • The government should make funding available for charities and community
    groups in selected areas of the country to pilot a series of ‘language of citizenship’
    initiatives. Through these civic engagement programmes, groups of immigrants with language learning needs would design and deliver social action projects in their local communities alongside volunteers drawn from the settled population.
  • ESOL programme providers in receipt of public funding should be required to build
    curriculum elements designed to celebrate modern British values and freedoms,
    including the right to marry someone of the same sex, into their courses.
  • Policymakers should create incentives for ESOL programme providers, technology firms and academics to collaborate on the development of new approaches to language learning incorporating digital tools, apps and massive open online courses (MOOCs).



Teacher, Salamanca, Spain – September 2017 onwards

August 30, 2017

Sarah, an ex-trainee from Swansea has written about her previous employer, who is now looking for a teacher for next year. Sarah writes that:

“She’s a wonderful person to work with and the students are great.”

Here are the basic details:

“Small, friendly English School in Salamanca, Spain seeks native English Teacher for the 2017/18 school year. The following are preferred. 1 year experience with children and/or adults, exam preparation experience. Pluses would be: basic+ level of Spanish and summer camp experience. 

Job begins end of September and goes through June 2018. 25 hours per week in the afternoons/evenings.

Salary based on qualifications

The director’s name is Mehr Issari and she can be contacted via email for further information at


‘Multilingual Swansea Snaps’

August 29, 2017

Multilingual Swansea Snaps’

As part of the 2017 Being Human UK Festival of the Humanities, Swansea University’s Research Institute for Arts and Humanities (RIAH) invites you to submit a photograph that you think represents Swansea’s multilingual culture.   Swansea has a rich variety of language communities, dialects, accents, alphabets and scripts … how much of this can be captured in a photograph? … be as figurative or abstract as you like!

Find out more: