My TEFL story

I’ve been working from home since 2016 and it’s not something I want to give up anytime soon. I love the freedom it gives me. But, as my main income comes from doing translation work, and one main client that requires me to do that work, it’s also a little bit scary. Because if that client disappears, my income disappears.

Diversifying my income

One of my goals for 2019 was to diversify my income, and it’s something I’m still working on in 2020. I started doing some research and came across people teaching English online, which seemed like an amazing job to combine with the work I was already doing.

Since I had no previous teaching experience and no idea of what to do, I enrolled with the TEFL Academy’s 168 hours TEFL course.

Four months later, I received my certificate.

Teaching online

After receiving my certificate, I didn’t use it for a few months. I had a busy summer where I was travelling and moving house.

Once things had settled down a bit, I started to apply for online teaching jobs. A lot of websites where you can teach English online require you to be a native English speaker. But there’s a fair few that will hire you with a TEFL certificate and a good level of English.

And that’s what I’ve been doing since October, in addition to my other work.

In the future

In the future, I would like to get some work teaching classes, face to face. I’ve been doing some research and would love, for example, to volunteer with refugees in England. (Working at a refugee centre in the Netherlands was my favourite job I’ve ever had.)

Other than that, I also have some vague plans in which I’ll be travelling around the world in two years time. And I’m fairly sure my TEFL certificate will come in good use for that as well.

Have you ever considered teaching online?



  1. Alexis
    9 March 2020 / 3:39 pm

    Teaching online is a fun option for working. I’ve taught online classes and enjoyed the experience.

    • maartjevansandwijk
      9 March 2020 / 7:57 pm

      Itโ€™s so much fun ๐Ÿ˜

  2. Kimberly Caines
    8 March 2020 / 5:56 am

    That sounds pretty interesting to know. I’m gonna check this out and find a tutorial video. Thanks for this,

  3. 5 March 2020 / 1:50 pm

    I started the process of getting one of these jobs. So I have been watching tutorials and videos of people in the midst of a class. Itโ€™s interesting.

  4. Lyosha Varezhkina
    5 March 2020 / 9:52 am

    it is a very important test, thanks for sharing the story

  5. 5 March 2020 / 8:34 am

    Congratulations, I believe teaching is a noble job, online or offline because you impart knowledge that can change someone’s life.

  6. catherine santiago jose
    5 March 2020 / 4:30 am

    This is such a nice true to life story to read. I have never tried to do an online teaching because I think that I don’t have the confident to do that but my families and friends pushing me to try it. I do not close my door on this opportunity but I think I need to prepare and ready myself on becoming an online teacher.

    • maartjevansandwijk
      5 March 2020 / 6:53 am

      I was really nervous about doing it at first – mainly because I had no idea what to do. This course really helped me feel
      More confident and then thereโ€™s so many teaching platforms where they provide all the materials… never thought it would be this easy ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. Chelsea Sauve - Wandure
    4 March 2020 / 6:27 pm

    Really interesting – love that you’ve made working from home work so well for you! That’s wonderful. Diversifying your portfolio with teaching online makes so much sense!

  8. 4 March 2020 / 5:45 pm

    I’ve been looking to TEFL. I would like to teach abroad some day and live that nomadic lifetsyle.

    • maartjevansandwijk
      4 March 2020 / 6:22 pm

      It really is a great course! Very practical and lots of information ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. jmaldia
    4 March 2020 / 4:06 pm

    Thanks for sharing. Always been interested in teaching online.

  10. 4 March 2020 / 3:23 pm

    wow my friend thanks so much for sharing this story of yours- its always good to becuase you never know ho its going to impact!

    • Erik the Hungry Traveller
      6 March 2020 / 3:49 am

      Thanks for sharing your experience. Teaching truly is both satisfying and challenging at the same time. Good luck on your journey!

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