Saturday, June 26, 2010

My Favorite TEFL Blogs

Was I the first TEFL blogger?

Alex Case's TEFLtastic blog seems to think I was.

Of course this was somewhat before there were blogs, I think, but I started posting stories, cartoons, interviews and advice on an Angelfire website in early 2003. I started an Angelfire blog in 2004, and this blog you see in 2005.

Regrettably it's not especially true that I was the first -- Harry Hutton over at Chase Me Ladies, I'm in the Cavalry had stories about his experiences teaching English posted on his "killer facts" website as early as 2000, I think, and got his blog going mainly in 2004, also. There was also Simon Barnes' "I Hate ESL" website, which was closing its doors as I opened mine, and later became ENGLISHDROID, the skeletal remains of which can be seen here via the Wayback Machine archive.

Now of course, there are hundreds, if not thousands of blogs by and for English teachers abroad. From old crazy guys writing 20 single-spaced, unpunctuated paragraphs a day about visa documentation and Obama, to young people who start a blog eagerly detailing their training and how much they love their new job and then give up the job, blog, and TEFL completely in 3 months, they're all out there!

And then there are blogs with, for example, humorous debates about the difference between ESL and EFL, and blogs about how wonderful different cities or countries are, invariably lathered with dozens of Google links to marriage agencies, sex tourism companies, and hotels.

Which do I read?

Absolutely fucking none of them, of course. I'd rather drive nails through my scrotum than read most of that crap.

Here's one I like though:

A guy started a blog about his adventures as an English teacher in Poland and Ukraine, and then quickly decided English teaching sucks and decided to join the French Foreign Legion.



And best of all -- no TEFL!

(He might well be making it all up about joining the French Foreign Legion, for all I know, but I think it's still a good read.)


Alex Case said...

Couldn't get the link to work, but here are my scavenged bits of English Droid

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the shout out. Nice to know somebody actually reads (and somehow likes) the shit I write.

It is all true, though not relevant anymore. I quit the legion after being warned by 50% of other legionairres, and realising all you are is a glorified cleaner who gets shouted at.

So back to the drawing board. This fucking profession is dragging me back for the 3rd time ;(

Anonymous said...

oh. . . dude. . .

I admit, that French Foreign Legion uniform is pretty gay.

mike said...

french foreign, that used to conjure up some romantic images of travel when I was a kid. great post!