Hello Exam Seekers,
Today I’m going to share with you, my own experience with the TKT.
As I mentioned, I’ve taken the TKT – Teaching Knowledge Test – a while ago, and it was one of my first experiences with English Certifications and English Teaching Examinations. Actually, it was the first, of a bunch that would come.
It all started with the language undergrad course I was taking at university. I can’t quite remember, but they were planning to apply the TKT on us – English language students. They are a Cambridge authorized prep and applying center, so I think that because of that, maybe they had some freedom to apply tests on their students…
I just remember that I wanted to take the test and there was I sitting for the TKT.
It wasn’t an official test. I mean, we weren’t going to receive any certificate in the end. That’s why I believe that Mackenzie University – my university – was trying to assess the level of teachers they were preparing for the market. I don’t think we even got the results actually. Anyways…
The thing is that I eventually forgot about this test and went on with my life.
In 2011, my mother told me that I was supposed to travel abroad. Since I was an English teacher, she thought that I had to have experience abroad – foreign experience – to have market value. And it indeed helped me along the way. So, I looked for a travel agency specialized in trips focused on providing people with an English course.
There was an interview in which I was supposed to tell them my preferences: which type of course, where I’d like to go, what I’d like to do, how long I’d like to stay, etc.
As I mentioned, I was already a teacher. I already held my graduation certificate, which means that I didn’t need a course abroad to study English. This is actually something interesting, most people in Brazil who travel abroad looking for English courses are people who are learning English – which, again, was not my case.
They gave me two options of courses: a semester-long course, and a month-long course. I was a teacher at the beginning of my career; however, I still couldn’t just leave for 6 months. So, I chose the one-month-long course – my vacation period in Brazil. Back then I didn’t know which course I was taken, eventually, I found out it was the TKT prep course.
I might have understood that I was taking the TKT prep course, but since I knew nothing about it, I guess I didn’t internalize it. Also, I was only focusing on the trip itself that it did not occur to me that it was a preparation course, which means a preparation course for a test. At the end of my stay there, my teacher in Canada asked us who was taking the TKT- the test. I was so clueless at the time that I thought that by the end of that course I would sit for the TKT, but I was mistaken!!! I did not know that I had to register for the test at the time, nor did I know a place to register.
The thing is that when I came back to Brazil, I searched for information on the web, and I finally registered for the three modules of the TKT which I had studied in Canada. Curiously, I sat for the TKT at Mackenzie University, now, for the real deal with certificate.
I did very well as you can see on my certificate below:
If I may say… I only got a Band 3 for TKT Module 1 because I had a terrible headache that morning. lol.
Well, as you could see, all the preparation was worth it, but I really wish I had known more about TKT and certificates in general at the time. Maybe I would have taken the TKT in Canada, not in Brazil. So much might have been different. Anyway, this is the reason why I decided to create this blog so that I could help people know more about this world before jumping into certifications without knowing about them.
Now, let me talk just a little bit about my experience with the prep course – this is the aim of this text, right?
It was my first trip abroad, and everything was new.
On the first day – I believe it was the first day of most courses there, because – they gathered everyone in the room and gave us some instructions. I took my books and finished my registration and I went to the classroom. It was me and 6 Korean girls.
As I mentioned before, I was taking a course for teachers, because I was already a teacher. These Korean women knew English, but they took the TKT prep course to become teachers. This course taught us not only what the Teaching Knowledge Test requires, but also some teaching skills. I learned How to Give Instructions properly, a few Warm-Ups, and more importantly: How to deal with people from different cultures.
- Every morning one of us was supposed to start the lesson with a warm-up. They offered us the book Five-Minute Activities – A resource book of short activities (Penny Ur / Andrew Write) so that we could take our ideas from it.
- Then we would have the input sessions all afternoon. We would learn about PPP (Presentation, Practice, Production); Gist / Detail / Scan; etc.
- Program Overview:
- Module 1:
- Describing language and language skills;
- Background to language learning and teaching;
- Giving instructions;
- Practice TKT exam.
- Module 2:
- Planning and preparing a sequence of lessons;
- Selection and use of resources and materials;
- Practice TKT exam.
- Module 3:
- Managing the teaching and learning process;
- Teachers and learners’ language in the classroom;
- Classroom management;
- Practice TKT exam.
- Other Components:
- Observation of an ESL class;
- Peer teaching (including lesson planning and preparation);
- Developing presentation skills;
- TESOL vocabulary and terminology.
- At night, I would study what was asked about the book: read the book, highlight stuff, do some mock tests.
This would be a regular day for me during the course. I enjoyed it very much. It was an English environment, I was focused on learning and studying, and getting the best I could from this course.
Well… This was my experience with the TKT. It was nice to live through it. To study and finally take the Teaching Knowledge Test. I hope you found it interesting. If you have questions about it, or if you want to share your experience, please leave a comment below!
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Have a great week,