Difficulties of Settling in

Park Guell with dramatic sky in Barcelona


Hi everyone,

After lots of stress and difficulties I got my visa for Spain and I will be attending in The Developing Teacher with Spanish course in Barcelona. As you can guess, of course I’m so happy for this, but now I have another problem and you may also guess what it is, right now my biggest problem is accommodation. My landlady who was waiting for me to arrive in September, and since I couldn’t make it for September, has rented her house to someone else. Now I have to find a new place to stay and my course starts on October 2nd, so I should find one before that and I was planing to book my flight for 28th September.

The prices are high and I’m no familiar with the process of renting a house in Spain. As I was searching for hostels and apartments in Barcelona, I recognized that there is some other additional fees for apartments which is known as ITP (Impuesto de Transmisiones Patrimoniales / Property Transfer Tax) and Since January 1st, 2015, in Catalonia, the tax amounts is 0.5% of the rent. This percentage applies to the total amount of rent payable for
the duration of the contract and in the case of contract renewal, it will be necessary to pay the proportional difference. Additional to this fee there is something else which is called Agency Fees and varies by the duration of your lease contract and the VAT will be added to this fee.

So now you can assume how hard it is for me to figure out all these fees and laws. I hope the Oxford House would find me a place to stay soon, so I will be able to book my flight.


P.S: I’ll be happy to hear your recommendations and experiences.

TED Talks for Educators

In search of inspiration or hard-won strategies for improving student learning? A 10-minute video may hold some answers for educators. TED Talks are short, informative, and often eye-opening talks given by leaders in their fields addressing all kinds of challenges. Many TED Talks are given by leading educators, or at least have important messages related to the field of education.

Math, English, science, history: these often represent the core subjects students are taught in grade school. But John McWhorter makes a persuasive argument for adding foreign languages to the list. The linguist and Columbia professor outlines four huge benefits that students — or anyone willing to learn — will reap when they learn a new language. From highlighting the delight in learning a “funny sounding” language to revealing the incredible effects language learning has on warding off certain medical conditions, McWhorter’s TED talk is a powerful reminder of the importance of words, no matter what language they’re spoken in.



6 life hacks to not only survive but succeed on a TEFL course (and after)

Over 10,000 people decide to take a TEFL courses every year, each having their own reasons to do so. Many are looking for a way to finance their travels for a year, others want to profoundly change their lives and careers and some have already been teaching and want to catch up with methodology and work on weak spots. No matter the reasons, taking a TEFL course is commonly described as an “intensive” adventure and as a tutor working on initial teaching training courses, I can confirm that without hesitation. However, there are a few easy hacks to make your life during a TEFL course much easier.

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The Trial

The Trial

[The Lawyer] had, of course, begun work straight away and was nearly ready to submit the first documents. They would be very important because the first impression made by the defence will often determine the whole course of the proceedings. Unfortunately, though, he would still have to make it clear to K. that the first documents submitted are sometimes not even read by the court. They simply put them with the other documents and point out that, for the time being, questioning and observing the accused are much more important than anything written. If the applicant becomes insistent, then they add that before they come to any decision, as soon as all the material has been brought together, with due regard, of course, to all the documents, then these first documents to have been submitted will also be checked over. But unfortunately, even this is not usually true, the first documents submitted are usually mislaid or lost completely, and even if they do keep them right to the end they are hardly read, although the lawyer only knew about this from rumour. This is all very regrettable, but not entirely without its justifications. But K. should not forget that the trial would not be public, if the court deems it necessary it can be made public but there is no law that says it has to be. As a result, the accused and his defence don’t have access even to the court records, and especially not to the indictment, and that means we generally don’t know – or at least not precisely – what the first documents need to be about, which means that if they do contain anything of relevance to the case it’s only by a lucky coincidence. If anything about the individual charges and the reasons for them comes out clearly or can be guessed at while the accused is being questioned, then it’s possible to work out and submit documents that really direct the issue and present proof, but not before. Conditions like this, of course, place the defence in a very unfavourable and difficult position. But that is what they intend. In fact, defence is not really allowed under the law, it’s only tolerated.
Franz Kafka, The Trial, Translated by David Wyllie

How to Teach English – the 10 Most Helpful Pieces of Advice

If you have studied an ESL teaching course you were probably given a lot of advice on how to teach English by tutors, and by well-meaning friends, colleagues or strangers. Sometimes it’s too much to take in so here is what I have found useful.

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15 reasons to avoid a TEFL course

Avoid Risks


Although it is hard to judge the quality of less well-known TEFL courses, it is comparatively easy to spot the ones that can be instantly dismissed. This article gives you some quick and easy methods to do just that.

By “reasons to avoid a TEFL course”, I most certainly don’t mean to avoid all TEFL training. Any training is better than none, and there are well-known and well-respected courses such as the Cambridge CELTA and Trinity CertTESOL that are available and recognized all over the world. There are, however, plenty of courses that you probably should avoid, especially if you also have the option of taking a more respected one (and most people do).

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