TEFL Certification in Manuel Antonio Beach, Costa Rica

Video and Photos

The view!
The view!
March 2017
March 2017
Manuel Antonio
Manuel Antonio
Cooking class at Cosi
Sunset in Manuel Antonio

About

Become a certified English teacher by earning a TEFL certification with Maximo Nivel on the beach in Manuel Antonio. TEFL Certification is your passport to living and working as English teacher anywhere else in the world!

The 4-week/150-hour certification program includes more than 15 hours of practical English teaching and observation of experienced teachers. Groups are small with 2 to 14 people.

The TEFL Program consists of 12 modules:

- Learning & Teaching Theory
- Lesson Planning
- Class Management
- Critical ESL Techniques
- English Grammar I
- English Grammar II
- Teaching Grammar
- Teaching Vocabulary
- Teaching Speaking & Writing
- Teaching Listening & Reading
- Teaching English with Games
- Assessing & Testing Learners
- Introduction to international English exams: TOEFL, IELTS, and Cambridge

Maximo Nivel is internationally accredited and the Maximo Nivel TEFL Certificate is accepted by institutes, language schools, and universities around the world.

Travel Grants Available for a Limited Time!

Ready to work as an English teacher abroad? Register today for our award winning TEFL Certification in Costa Rica, Guatemala and Peru and apply for a special travel grant.

Questions & Answers

Apart from what the others have already suggested, I would also advise that any travel you intend on doing, you are prepared to leave until you've finished or to start beforehand. Manuel Antonio is a beautiful place, and you will certainly have beach time. But don't be fooled! The classes are intensive and require outside-the-classroom prep time. Good luck and have fun!
Thanks so much for your reply. I'd love if you could connect me with them! I'm going to be studying at Maximo in January 2017 and am very keen to teach :)
I would definitely recommend a laptop. You'll need it to work on assignments and lesson plans out of class. The building can get pretty hot, so being able to relocate to cooler locations is a must. Regarding clothes, I wore decent shorts and collared shirts for the classes. For interviews, I would recommend something more business casual.
The cost of the program varies by location and what type of stay you prefer (apartment, hostel, or homestay). I have added a link to the estimated program costs below that you may find helpful. In general, the cost will be somewhere between $2000-$2500, not including your flight. http://www.maximonivel.com/tefl-tesol/prices/

Reviews

98%
based on 148 reviews
  • Benefits 9.5
  • Support 9.8
  • Fun 8.2
  • Facilities 8.3
  • Safety 9.2
  • Instruction 9.9
  • Support 9.9
  • Value 9.5
  • Academic Rigor 8.4
  • Job Assistance 9.7
  • Instruction 10
  • Support 10
  • Fun 10
  • Housing 10
  • Value 10
Showing 1 - 15 of 148
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Maggie
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

TEFL in Manuel Antonio

I had just graduated from college with majors in Hispanic Linguistics, International Studies and Non-Profit Management when I decided to sign up for the TEFL program in Manuel Antonio. I wasn't entirely ready for a full-time job in the States quite yet, so I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to do a "gap year" in between graduating and getting a full time job back home. Latin America is one of my favorite places to travel and Manuel Antonio is a beautiful beach town in Costa Rica. I had no teaching experience before the program and really didn't know much about English grammar. During the course you learn how to teach effectively, how to lesson plan, English grammar, C.V/resume building and so much more. Maximo Nivel helped me get a job and now I am currently teaching in San Jose for 6 months too. Overall, I highly recommend this program!

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
I would recommend learning as much Spanish before you go because it helps you live in the country and helps you understand/connect with your students.
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Haley
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Professional and all around delightful experience

I loved my time as a TEFL student with Audra Wooldridge. She challenged us, encouraged us, and motivated us to be the best teachers that we can be. Maximo Nivel is an incredibly supportive and professional company, and I would recommend many people to take this course. I learned so much about teaching and myself that I so much appreciate. What a great and helpful staff. 20/10! They provide coffee and have snacks and drinks for purchase. I really felt comfortable and supported in every way. It has a beautiful view over the ocean, and monkeys and iguanas hanging out around the building. It's a very beautiful place to study if you don't mind the heat. This was a super interesting program all in all, and I have made lifelong friendships! I am so grateful!

What was the most nerve-racking moment and how did you overcome it?
Teaching my first lesson. I overcame this fear by just getting up there and teaching. Its a process that you definitely learn as you go. We learned together, and came out stronger on the other side.
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Justyna
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Stuck in a career...

So I waited a whole month before writing my review- I wanted to come down from the euphoria and whirlwind that this course has brought into my mind. You might be reading this first sentence thinking no way it could be true. But let me start off by telling you a little about myself- I’m 29; have a good, well paying job in finance; and l live in Los Angeles- so if I ever saw myself as an outsider I’d probably think “she’s got it pretty made.” But as an insider of my life- my job burns me out, I’m almost 30 and I don’t enjoy what I do nor do I wake up everyday excited to walk into an office where everyone is out for themselves and will conquer all to get to the top. That’s not my personality and the exhaustion from being at war with the attempt to survive each passing day has caused me to think of “what’s next?” Quite frankly I didn’t know what’s next- so I took a three month sabbatical, traveled with my sister, visited my parents and decided to try something new- something completely outside of my expertise- teaching. I’ve always loved Latin America (obviously you have the food, but also the culture, the people, the music, the happiness I’ve know Every Latino to possess, even when they are faced with some of the most unimaginable hardships) I love talking, and I enjoy helping people and meeting new people. So I thought- why not try teaching in Costa Rica, who knows I just might love it. Day one in the classroom Audra enters, all 12 of us these doe eyed students looking at each other unsure of who this looney is that had just entered the room. She was a wrecking ball- full of energy from the minute her little red scooter pulled in till the rains came and her little red scooter left. Over a four week period she has given us a look into how she had good things going her way and she left it all to explore herself and the world that lays in front of each of us. Going into this I did not know I was a teacher at heart- but from the first day I stood in front of that classroom teaching a “HowTo - 20 minute mini lesson” she helped shaped me and bring my natural Goofyness out. Audra is an inspiration as a teacher as she wants you to feel the pizzazz that comes with standing up in front of a room of limited English speakers and talking. She will goof off and let you see that it’s okay to eff up, or to look like a fool and not always have perfect teaching days. But for each of those moments where you feel you did terrible, shell lift you up by finding something good in you. That’s not to say she’s an easy teacher/grader. Oh no, you’ll want to toss her into the floods outside on numerous occasions- but it’s so worth it. The experience I had at Maximo Nivel has brought me 12 amazing new friends, amazing new mentors as I embark on a frightening yet exciting career change, and numerous lifelong friends across Costa Rica. I so very highly recommend this course for those of you who are in my shoes, or those of you deciding between courses- this is it, it’s the one that will change your views.

What was the most nerve-racking moment and how did you overcome it?
The most nerve racking moment about this program was going on my own for four weeks to a country I’ve never been to and not knowing a single soul. Turns out everyone that has that same burst of courage to take this course is pretty darn amazing and worth getting to know.
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Juliana
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

1000% Worth it!

This course blew my expectations out of the water! The course is back-heavy which makes a great opportunity to get to bond with classmates at the start, and then work-together as the course progresses. My TEFL classmates were amazing people. Hence why we formed a tight-knit group with countless memories and stories to share by the end. From having nerdy conversations about the proper order of adjectives during a night out on the town, to doing worthwhile group activities in class, this is a great way to meet new people and expand your world-view. Our instructor, the lovely Audra, was also a massive part of what made the course so worthwhile. It's obvious she loves what she does and that attitude inspires students to want to be the best teachers they can!

What was the most nerve-racking moment and how did you overcome it?
My most nerve-racking moment was getting a needs improvement on my second mini-lesson. This ended being a great experience because I emailed Audra and she immediately responded encouragingly and wanted me to come to talk to her in class. She was really really accessible, and we had great conversation about what I should improve on for the next lesson. She even helped me plan out all my board-work for the next time. This shows how awesome Audra is because she has taken the course so many times that she easily relates to student frustrations and always knows the right things to say and do to encourage and support us.
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Cole
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Do this program. Sign up immediately.

This was a completely fantastic experience. The teacher, Audra, is a complete legend, and I can't imagine anybody more qualified to be teaching teachers how to teach. If you think TEFL Certification isn't necessary, wait until you teach your first class. You'll be an awkward weirdo and have no way to keep your class engaged. If, on the other hand, you decide to come live in a fantastic tropical paradise for a few weeks while meeting incredible people and enjoying your life to the highest degree imaginable, you'll be able to develop unrivaled confidence and techniques that will make you a wiz in the classroom. The school is gorgeous and the atmosphere is off the charts. Don't just sit there, sign up for this program immediately when you finish reading this review.

Ready, set.....GO

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Marie
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

TEFL Heaven in Manuel Antonio Costa Rica

My goal before this course started was to begin my teaching English career. I had gotten a TESOL certificate online in 2014 and I had never done anything with it. I had gotten a Master of Science degree online with Full Sail University and I had not done anything with that degree too. Finally, in July, I had decided to try to volunteer teach abroad. I thought the first thing I needed was to volunteer teach to see if I liked teaching English and I would also be able to gain teaching experience.

I signed up for a volunteer teach English program with IVHQ in San Jose, Costa Rica. A little bit before I arrived in Costa Rica, I learned that IVHQ partners up with Maximo Nivel to deliver their volunteer programs. I learned that Maximo Nivel would be putting me in a volunteer position and would be taking care of my housing. I was very excited. I found out that Maximo Nivel was awesome right from the get go because everything about my arrival to Costa Rica went smoothly. Once I started my volunteer teach program with Fundacion Mujer, I had a field manager who told me about the Cost Maximo Nivel Manuel Antonio TEFL program. On my third day of volunteer teaching, I decided to sign up for the TEFL program with Cost Maximo Nivel in Manuel Antonio.

With my online TEFL program certificate, I could teach English, but I did not have the experience and I felt uncomfortable teaching with very little teaching experience. Once I started my volunteer teach English program in San Jose, I knew I needed more training from an onsite TEFL program. This program has been perfect for me because I am getting first hand teaching with basic English students and with my teacher guiding me. When I was teaching at Fundacion Mujer, I gained a lot of experience, but it was with advanced English learners and I could teach mostly from a provided model. I made articles using Wikipedia articles to hand out to the class, have them read it, and then after go over the vocabulary.

I learned once I started this TEFl course and got to teach the basic English students that a pulled and provided model works best. I learned how to use the EPA model into my teaching. I also learned to create many CCQ questions. I think this experience has been very valuable and I hope to be able to teach in San Jose, Costa Rica in the future.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Make sure to visit Buru restaurant by the beach in Quepos and Victoria's in Manuel Antonio.
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Richard
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Just do it

I really enjoyed my TEFL course at máximo nivel the location at Manuel Antonio is fantastic with amazing beaches and great food and restaurants etc. The staff at máximo were really helpful (Karen, Frances and Abby) and knowledgeable of the ESL industry and were willing to share information internally with maximo and externally throughout other countries. The course had great balance and structure and i learnt a lot more than I anticipated. Our instructor Audra is fantastic with an outgoing personality and passion for her work and life, I gained a lot of confidence and experience from the course and can highly recommend the experienced to anyone thinking about doing the TEFL. It was also a great place to learn Spanish and i was lucky enough to have a great teacher in Frances who helped me learn a lot easier than than I thought it would be

Read my full story
Default avatar
Moriah
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Moving Abroad with Maximo

Coming to Costa Rica with Maximo Nivel turned out to be more than I thought it would. When I had decided to move abroad, I always told people I was leaving to work on my Spanish and to take a break from the US politics of education. What I didn't expect was to gain an additional set of skills and strategies that would forever change my life as an educator. For the first time in years, I was given real time, critical feedback about my teaching. Additionally, I was receiving a personalized style of learning and guidance from Maximo Nivel. My TEFL instructor, Audra, has been a professional mentor to me and also a personal guide to learning how to thrive down here.

The course was rigorous - come prepared to work! I knew what to expect at all times, they guided me in finding a job by helping me to build a resume and make connections, they also hosted weekly free events and I received a tandem at no price from Quepos to practice my Spanish.

Without Maximo or this course, I would not have been able to land on my feet here. Thank you!

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Come prepared to work! You'll have time to relax too, don't worry! But, this is an intense program that is definitely worth the money.
Default avatar
emma
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

So much more than I thought!

First off, I have to make it clear that I went into this program blind. Being in my final year of undergrad, with graduation fast approaching, where I wanted to go in the future seemed so up in the air and this seemed like an impulse thought on a quick fix hoping something would come out of it...and boy did it. This course was so much more than I thought it was going to be, in the best way possible. This course challenged me and showed me who I am as a teacher, where my strengths and weakness lie, and gave me the opportunity to see if teaching English is something I truly want to pursue (which, now more than ever, it is). Our teacher, Audra, is by far the best instructor I've ever had for any course I've been enrolled in. She is charismatic, outgoing, and whole-heartedly cares about the growth and success of her students - such a refreshing change for once. The staff at Maximo Nivel are exceptional at their jobs and are sweetest group of people. If you are looking at where to enrol, I'd say Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica. Who wouldn't want to stare out at the beautiful views every morning at school or be less than 5 minutes away from one of the world's most beautiful beaches?

Some things, however, to note: Our host family spoke 0 English, so communication with them was very difficult. I thought that our host family would know some English due to having previous students stay with them, however, this was not the case. So, if you know some Spanish, that is fantastic! As well, during the course, you are provided with the best support (from Audra especially) in finding a job as soon as you graduate. If I did not have to head back for my last year of undergrad, this is something I would have pounced on (keep in mind, Audra keeps in contact with us so even in the future when we are looking for a job, she is there to help!). Also note, course work isn't quick and easy! You'll definitely have your down time for the first 2 weekends, however, prepare to be very busy for the following ones, so don't plan any excursions before hand! In terms of bus fare home (specific to those looking into Manuel Antonio), if you have a flight in the morning, the last bus ride to San Jose (about 3 hours away from Manuel Antonio) is 4pm the day before (the first one to leave in the morning is at 5 am, however, our flight was at 11am but there was a high chance that it could be delayed as it is a public bus and we could have missed our plane). If you have a flight in the morning, you will have to take the 4pm bus ride the day before and stay the night in San Jose (this is something me and my roommate wished we had known before hand as we already paid for a night in a hotel room in Manuel Antonio only to have to leave the day before, losing out on about $200 as we also had to spend a night at a hotel in San Jose). These are just a few things I wished I had seen just before heading off to embark on this amazing experience!

Other than that, if you are on the fence about getting your TEFL certificate through Maximo Nivel, just do it! This course compared to an online TEFL certificate is like no other and will exceed your expectations, I promise you. It will be the best choice you make!

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Breanna
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing experience, 100% recommend!

The TEFL course is truly amazing. Although there is a decent amount of work, it is a lot of fun and the weeks will fly by! The course content is organized and you will leave with valuable skills you will use when teaching abroad. With 5 hours of practical teaching experience, you are able to become confident as a teacher and use the feedback given to grow. Audra is an amazing instructor. She teaches the content well, is encouraging, gives useful feedback and is always willing to help you succeed. Perfect course for young people who aren’t sure where they want to go or what they want to do. If you want to travel on a budget, this course is a great stepping stone to visit many countries while teaching English. Don’t worry, you will not leave disappointed.

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Alexandra
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Learning in paradise

Costa Rica is an amazing location to obtain the TEFL certification. The friendships that one makes with their fellow classmates are unforgettable and long-lasting. Sometimes I asked myself if all of the TEFL classes became as tight knit as our particular class had become. Everyone in our class meshed really well and I felt a different type of connection with each student and with each teacher. It is impossible not to feel proud of your classmates when you see how much they have grown from that first day of class. The times of vulnerability, stress, and triumph create and unforgettable experience amongst the class. There were only positive vibes here! I do not know if it was because of the wonderful people or because of the positive rainforest energy in Manuel Antonio.

What would you improve about this program?
The only issue I had with this program is that the resources available to complete the work can cause a bit of a struggle. I did not bring my laptop with me to Costa Rica because I had been traveling alone the month before. My only regret was not bringing my laptop because getting out of the school to do some work on my own would have been beneficial.
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amy
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Live and Learn in paradise!

This program is excellent if you are interested in getting a good, comprehensive introduction and practice into the world of teaching English. The course is comprehensive with strong academic rigor. There are several things that I think the make this course so worthwhile. It is 150 hours as opposed to 120 and the academics are to be taken seriously, for example, you will be writing a paper on a grammar topic! Another is the location - living in Quepos and making the short trip to Manuel Antonio daily was an enjoyable and easy aspect of daily life. Plus you get sure footing as starting a network and life in Costa Rica beyond the class. Last but not least is the instruction. As you are learning and testing new skills, you need an instructor that gives you practical feedback and lots of encouragement. Our instructor in Costa Rica offered that and a clear commitment to seeing you grow and succeed.

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Amelia
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Thank you Maximo Nivel!

I would recommend this program to anyone. The skills learned in the class are applicable to almost any job. The care and support given by each staff member are truly unmatched. Everyone is there for you and will work with you for any problem, big or small. I was having a problem late at night so I messaged one of the staff members and they responded to me so fast and helped resolve the issue. I was shocked by the speed and professionalism of the staff. I had such an amazing experience, I almost feel bad for my friends because they do not know how special and incredible it is getting your TEFL in Costa Rica. The location is absolutely stunning, and on your off time, there are so many activities to do close by. I wish that everyone can have the opportunity to experience this first hand.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
My advice to future travelers on this program would be to believe in yourself. Yes, you are capable of completing this course with flying colors. There are times when the workload seems to be piling up and you are stressed. All you need to do is believe that you can and will do it. And if you need a little extra help, just ask one of the amazing instructors who are more than happy to assist you in anything you may need.
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Don
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Excellent Experience

Maximo Nivel gave me great preparation for a career teaching English as a foreign language. The exciting techniques I learned will revolutionize my approach to teaching. I now have the skills and confidence I need to be successful as a teacher of English to speakers of other languages. I would highly recommend this program to anyone who is contemplating teaching English as a foreign language to adults or to children. It's one thing to know the English language. It's another thing to be able to effectively teach English to speakers of other languages. I think the most eye opening thing for me was to see how to create an immersion experience for learners where only English is used in the classroom. I would not have imagined this to be possible. But, not only is it possible, it is by far the most effective way to teach languages. I give Maximo Nivel my highest praise and recommendation for the experience they gave me.

What was your funniest moment?
A very funny moment was when our school was invaded by Capuchino monkeys. Being so close to the jungle, this is to be expected. But, it was a truly funny and lively moment for all involved.
Read my full story
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Sylvie
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

A truly transformative experience!

I went into this program as a mousy 18 year old with no teaching experience whatsoever. I knew it would be a good way to get out of my comfort zone, but I had no idea what was ahead of me. While I did underestimate the workload (this is an INTENSIVE course - don't think you'll get off easy and be able to go to the beach every day), more importantly, I underestimated how incredible this experience would be. I met and worked with some of the most amazing people who I got closer to in 4 weeks than I ever thought possible. I had the two most wonderful teachers, Karen Wilke (we love you our ubuntu queen!!) and Courtney Miville, who were always so supportive and made class fun, dealt with breakdowns like champs, and gave invaluable feedback that helped me become a better teacher. All of those people made the hard work well worth it. I would highly recommend this program to you, even if you don't plan to become a teacher, although it might just turn you into one :) Through it all, I grew so much as a teacher and as a person - in my confidence, in my willingness to open up and be vulnerable in front of others, and in my understanding that no matter what, there is always someone going through it with you. "I am because we are." Thank you to all of my ubuntu people for this truly incredible experience.

Location

Location:
San José
Currency:
Costa Rican Colón
Weather:
Jan-Mar
79 F / 57 F
Apr-Jun
81 F / 63 F
Jul-Sep
88 F / 73 F
Oct-Dec
86 F / 73 F

Costa Rica is known for its Pura Vida lifestyle and San José is a great place to get familiar with the lifestyle. One of the best ways to discover San José is through the arts; whether you like theatre, dance, or music, this is the quickest way to the heart of Costa Rica.

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About Maximo Nivel

Founded in 2003, Maximo Nivel is a leading organization in study abroad and educational travel. We are an internationally accredited organization with 4 locally based institutes in 3 of the most beautiful countries in the world—Costa Rica, Guatemala....