what is an English teacher?

As an English teacher, you teach the English language according to the national curriculum. At a basic level, an English teacher helps students develop basic written and verbal communication abilities. For instance, you cover reading and listening comprehension of the English language. Some of the foundational academic skills you teach include punctuation, vocabulary and sentence structure. You also work on your students' listening skills to help them understand English. You also teach basic speaking skills to express various emotions, including word choice and pronunciation.

English teachers use various teaching methods to improve comprehension of the English language. For instance, you can create discussion groups and encourage debates to facilitate a hands-on teaching approach. Apart from teaching, you create lesson plans, instruct teaching assistants, and prepare classrooms for lessons.

As well as classroom teaching in primary and secondary schools, some English teachers teach in institutions that offer English as a second language. Working as an English teacher requires excellent knowledge of the national curriculum and a passion for the language. Being enthusiastic about your job is essential, as your enthusiasm motivates students to enjoy their learning experience.

Would working as an English teacher suit your passion for teaching and love of literature? Then read on to find out what competencies and qualifications you need to thrive in an English teacher role.

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average English teacher salary

According to ONS, the average salary of an English teacher in the UK is £34,996 per year. Entry-level positions attract a salary of £31,201 annually, while experienced English teachers earn £45,500 annually. Your compensation package fluctuates based on various factors. For instance, educational qualifications and experience influence your earnings. You can negotiate a higher salary when you have additional qualifications like extra certificates and degrees. Improving your expertise through teaching assistant roles also enhances your salary prospects.

what factors influence the earnings of an English teacher?

In the UK, your location affects your compensation package. Working in large cities like London increases your salary prospects since most employers factor in the higher cost of living. The demand for English teachers in large cities boosts salaries. Your employer also influences your compensation package. If you work in a state school, the government dictates your salary. However, working in independent schools increases your compensation package, as independent schools set their own rates.


Teacher in class
Teacher in class

types of English teachers

Some of the types of English teachers include:

  • primary school English teachers: as a primary school English teacher, you teach pupils at the primary level. You teach learners how to read and write English, while in higher years, you teach them the principles of the English language. You follow the national curriculum and prepare students for examinations.
  • secondary school English teacher: as a secondary school English teacher, you ensure your students have a good command of the English language. You also help students analyse and read literature to develop their critical thinking skills. In secondary schools, you engage students using hands-on teaching styles like debates and discussion groups

working as an English teacher

Working as an English teacher is an exciting career that involves interacting with students of different ages. If you want to find out more about the role, read on to discover your potential duties and explore your work environment.


education and skills

Some of the educational qualifications of an English teacher include:

  • bachelor's degree: the minimum requirement for becoming an English teacher is a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution. You can take a general degree in any subject, followed by a postgraduate teaching qualification, such as a Postgraduate Teaching Certificate (PGCE), to gain Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). You will learn English learning and teaching strategies, the national curriculum and classroom management.
  • experience: start working as a teaching assistant to learn the ropes and improve your skills. You can look for training programmes to boost your qualifications and aim for qualified teaching roles.

english teacher skills and competencies

Some of the qualities that help you excel as an English teacher include:

  • a good sense of humour: as an English teacher, you build a rapport with students to make your lessons engaging. A good sense of humour makes your classes enjoyable and motivates your students. Share stories to make your lessons relatable and fun for pupils. Your sense of humour helps to promote comprehension in literature lessons.
  • critical thinking skills: as an English teacher, you require good problem-solving skills, and critical thinking helps you develop exciting ways to deal with any problems that arise. For instance, if students don't understand a concept, you find new study methodologies or techniques to help them.
  • time management: as an English teacher, you handle multiple tasks. Apart from lesson planning, you attend meetings and prepare the necessary class materials. You also mark students' work and submit it by the stipulated deadlines.
  • motivational skills: as an English teacher, your passion for the English language motivates students to love it too. Motivational skills help you encourage students who struggle to keep up with the curriculum to enjoy English.
  • computer skills: as an English teacher, you use spreadsheets to record grades and create PowerPoint presentations. Computer skills help you complete your admin duties and navigate learning management platforms for online teaching.
progress schools
progress schools

FAQs about working as an English teacher

Here, you will find the answers to the most frequently asked questions about the profession of an English teacher.

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