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  • Learning and Communicative Strategies August 23, 2012
    Communicative strategies are systematic techniques employed by a speaker to express his meaning when faced with some difficulty and the difficulty here refers to the speaker’s inadequate command of the language used in the interaction (Faerch & Kasper, 1983:16). On the other hand, the term learning strategies has been defined as “the higher-order skills […]
  • Review: Teaching Unplugged by Luke Meddings and Scott Thornbury August 13, 2012
    by Hall Houston About 8 years ago, I read an article titled “Teaching Unplugged” by Scott Thornbury in It’s for Teachers magazine. The article described a new approach to teaching languages that de-emphasized coursebooks and other teaching materials, and stressed real communication between students. This approach was loosely based on a Danish film movement [ […]
  • Living and Working in Japan: A guide for US Citizens May 23, 2012
    Japan is a stable, highly developed parliamentary democracy with a modern economy. Tourist facilities are widely available, except in coastal areas of Northeast Japan still recovering from the aftermath of the March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami. Below is a comprehensive list of all the information you should read before visiting or relocating to the [... […]
  • Experience a New Culture When you Teach English in China May 21, 2012
    The human desire to help others is an innate one. This is why, despite the negative aspects, people are still very attracted to the profession of teaching, notes Thomas Galvin. It has been regarded for centuries as a very noble job, and no doubt this will continue for centuries to come. Many teachers these days […]
  • The Importance of Vocabulary Roots in AP English April 16, 2012
    The Advanced placement exams are very important for students, suggests Joseph Paul, as they look very good on the students’ report cards and also help them to get credit in certain universities which helps them to save a major portion of the tuition money demanded from students who have not cleared the exam. The advanced […]
  • Business Translation: A Useful TEFL Sideline? April 8, 2012
    The use of translation in business is heavily underestimated and misunderstood. However translation has a big part to play in business and is rapidly becoming one of the most useful things an organisation can use to get ahead in the business world. Whether it be using in-house translators to transcribe documents, official papers and […]
  • How to Judge the Quality of Language Learning Software March 21, 2012
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  • The worst ELT interview questions… and how to answer them March 12, 2012
    Some friends of Naturegirl123 were talking about interview questions that they got. Here are some difficult ones to answer and suggested answers. What religion are you?/ Are you X religion? This could be a legit question if you’re applying to a religious school. If you have the same religion as the school, simply say so. […]

Writing a Teaching Cover Letter

By Sharon K Couzens de Hinojosa of the TEFL Tips website

Cover letters are just as important, if not more so than your actual CV. A Cover Letter is the first thing that an employer sees, so it has to make a good impression. Here are some tips on how to write a good teaching cover letter.


● Personalise it for each employer. You should address it to an actual person, not just Dear Sir or Madam, or To Whom it May Concern. Call the institute and ask who the director is and address your cover letter to that person.

● Briefly sum up your CV. Give a bit of information about your studies and experience.

● Tell why you want to work for them. Show the employer that you know something about them. If they are an IB school, state that you would like to put your theory into practice by working for them.

● Tell them what you have to offer. Why should they hire you? This is your chance to sell yourself. If you have experience creating exams, placing students, or being a head teacher, let them know.

● Be formal. There should be no contractions or informal language in your cover letter. Same goes for nicknames, use your legal name on your cover letter.

● End your cover letter asking for an interview. Remain positive that you will get the job and it will show the employer that you think you deserve the position.

● Write your contact information on your cover letter. Give your phone number and email so that they have a choice of how they would like to reach you.

● Go online and look for same cover letters. There are lots of examples out there.

● Have someone else read over your cover letter to make sure it makes sense and there are no mistakes.

● Update it when necessary. Take out the old information and put in the new.

Transparent Language


● Discuss subjects that aren’t related to your job or career.

● State that you only want to stay for a few months.

● Talk badly about past employers. There’s no reason why you should say why you are leaving your current job.

● Talk about other people in your cover letter. That’s great that your mom’s a teacher, but how does that relate to you? Unless you helped her teach or observed her, don’t mention it. And when you refer to your mom, use her legal name, not “mom”.

● Rehash your entire CV. A cover letter is suppose to entice people to read your CV. If they both have the same information, there’s no point in reading your CV.

● Wait until the last moment to update it. You should update it every time you have something pertinent to add. Did you organise a talent show? Put that down while the information is still fresh in your mind.

About the author

Sharon K Couzens de Hinojosa is the creator and writer for TEFL Tips, The LA Job List, and The Ultimate Peru List. She enjoys answering people’s questions about TEFLing and Peru.

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