Home / Louise’s Italy Adventure
Italy teaching english

You’re currently teaching in Italy. Tell us about your unique journey to working abroad as a teacher—including your TEFL course experience.

I flew into Pisa and stayed in a hostel for a night. The hostel staff were amazing and helped me with my luggage the minute I arrived. I never do travel light. I think I got four hours of sleep, I was running on an adrenaline rush the next morning. Then, I travelled to Florence by train and began two days of training with the school. I met fantastic staff and made new friends who were going to be TEFL teachers in Italy, too but in different locations. We stayed in Florence for a few extra days because it was cheap until I got my fiscal code (PPSN). I travelled North to Emilia Romagna, collected my fiscal code and was allowed to start work. I stayed in an Airbnb for two weeks until I was able to move into my apartment. The staff in the school are excellent! We recently went out for sushi, and it was a great chance to get to know them better. They are very supportive. I teach adolescents and adults in a private school, and they’ve become friends.

This is your second internship. Do you have any recommendations on why you decided to partake in 2 internships with the TEFL Institute of Ireland over just searching for a job?

I did a three-month internship in Spain with the TEFL Institute of Ireland to really test the water if I would like to teach English abroad. I then decided that I really enjoyed it, and the internship in Italy was really a gateway to a job in Italy.

Do you recommend learning a bit of Italian before coming over?

I do recommend learning Italian before coming over. It’s a beautiful language, and I
recommend learning on Duolingo or even TikTok. Bare in mind that there are different dialects in Italy, and you will come across little phrases from your location.

Did your TEFL course prepare you to teach English in Italy?

Yes, and I liked how you can download resources.

Tell us more about your teaching. How big are your classes & how many hours a week have you been teaching?

I’ve been teaching for two weeks now and I would have a maximum of seven students in class. I also teach individual lessons. I’ve lessons that focus on grammar points and focus activities that are designed for speaking.

How much would you budget for daily expenses?

I would budget €20 if you like to eat out. It’s very reasonable here. You can get breakfast for €3.50 (cappuccino and croissant), and lunch for €6.50 (a traditional sandwich called Piadina Romagnola). A large bottle of water can cost less than 50c. For dinner, you can buy a pizza slice for €3.

Tell us about the application process for the Italy internship. Was the interview hard to pass? Was the demo lesson hard to prepare?

I found the interview like a chat. It was more to find out about each other and a few questions about teaching. For example, why teaching?. The demo lesson was very straightforward, and they guide you on how to make one. The TEFL Institute of Ireland also kindly offered assistance. It’s a 3min video of you teaching, and I was giving a slide to teach.

What advice do you have for individuals considering using their TEFL certificate to focus on teaching business English?

From teaching English here in Italy, I can see a massive demand for people wanting to learn English for many reasons. It can be for work, to travel, or a fluent English speaker who has married into the family. There seems to be a shortage of teachers, and people are reaching out to the teachers here for extra support.

Can you share favourite stories from your time teaching English in Italy?

Recently at the school, there was a games event with students. After, all the staff went to an all you can eat sushi restaurant. We scanned a QR code and ordered from our phones every 10 mins, but there were no prices on the menu. I was a little worried. We all had about two glasses of white wine each, and we all shared sushi. The sushi was the best I ever had. My mind was blown when it was only €30. I was thinking €60. It was a lovely surprise.

What are two interesting things about Italy that the average person wouldn’t know?

You should only order a cappuccino in the morning. An Aperitivo is when Italians go for a drink after work or before dinner to open up the stomach. A Campari spritz is one I recommend.

Any tips for other teachers who are considering this internship?

It’s a decision you wouldn’t regret. Italian people are welcoming and friendly There. They appreciate it when you speak a little Italian too. The lifestyle here is incredible. Great company, food and sunshine. I work in a private school with adults, so my busiest times are from 5-9 pm. Women can take a day off when they’re on their menstrual cycle and get paid.

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