TESL Basics for Language Volunteers

Does Your Agency Manage TESL Volunteers in the Classroom or the Community? Be Sure to Read On.

At New Language Solutions we recognize volunteers can be an important part of settlement language training. TESL Basics for Language Volunteers (TBLV) is an online course funded by IRCC. TBLV was developed to offer basic TESL training and orientation for volunteers working with newcomers in conversation circles and other informal language training, or for volunteers working as teacher’s aides in formal language training programs, such as LINC.

The course was first piloted in 2018, after which it was updated and enhanced with TBLV movies, a podcast and an additional topic (Remote Volunteering).  The course was piloted again in the fall of 2020 and now it is available for local or regional adaptation and delivery! The updated course is about 15 hours in length, delivered online over a period of 7 weeks. Each week a new topic is introduced, including an introduction to the CLBs, working with lower-level learners, using realia, and volunteering in an online environment. Language volunteers receive some theoretical background, but first and foremost get lots of practical tips and suggestions on how to teach English as a Second Language.

We’re looking for IRCC-funded regional or local service providers to partner with us and here’s what we can provide: New Language Solutions will host the TBLV course for local SPOs and provide free training for local volunteer coaches on how to manage the course. These coaches will be trained TESL professionals with at least 2 years experience in the field, as well as experience using Avenue. Local or regional coaches will enroll and support their volunteers through the course and can modify the course with local resources. NLS will also provide the coaches continuing in-service support from our TBLV coordinator.

Curious to learn more? Watch our short promo videos or listen to our podcast:

Why Volunteer?


Interview with Shabana Shahzad, the Centre for Newcomers, about their local TBLV

Or, contact the TBLV Project Lead at MarijkeG@avenue.ca .