- On 13 April 2020
Adam Rendall is from Scotland, and has been studying at Via Lingua Florence for 4 weeks in our TEFL Certificate He loves hill walking and exploring what Florence has to offer. Find out some more interesting things about him below.
- Where were you born and raised? Give us a mental picture of the place(s).
I grew up in Edinburgh, Scotland – specifically, Leith, the area Trainspotting was set. Edinburgh is famous worldwide for its unique mix of medieval gothic and Georgian architecture and attracts millions of tourists each year from all around the world. It is a vibrant city with plenty to do, especially in August when the city is taken over by a four-week-long arts festival, with over 1000 events across the city throughout the month.
- What do you do for fun?
I’m a very active person, so most of what I do for fun includes some type of sport or fitness activity. American football has been my main sport for a few years, but I have recently stopped playing and started coaching instead. Apart from that, I also like to write and draw when I have the time.
- What are your hobbies?
I’ve always been very interested in cars and motoring, so I spend a lot of time reading and watching TV shows about cars and motor racing. I am also interested in history and politics so you can often find me watching documentaries on Netflix.
- What is your special talent?
I’m good at pub quizzes – which really just means I know a lot of (almost) useless facts.
- What is your future profession?
I studied Criminology at university, so the plan was always to join Police Scotland after a couple of years travelling and teaching English. However, I have also been thinking about getting a diploma in counselling and pursuing a career as a school counsellor or social worker.
- What do you like about it?
I have always been adamant that I wouldn’t have a boring desk job, so working in the police has always appealed to me as an exciting profession. Similarly, the idea of being a counsellor appeals to me as an interesting and important job which probably doesn’t get monotonous or repetitive. I also like to help people, and I think both of these jobs would give me the capacity to do just that.
- Tell us about your family. Siblings? Pets? Do they live close to you?
I have two siblings, an older brother and a younger sister. My brother is 24 and works in sustainable energy and my sister is 16 and still at school. Most of my family lives in Scotland, however some are in Fife, Angus and Stirlingshire, which are each less than two hours from Edinburgh. I also have an uncle who lives in London. I don’t have any pets of my own, but I consider myself the uncle of my brother’s greyhounds, Barry and Sue.
- Why did you choose to study TEFL in Florence?
I chose to study TEFL in Florence because I needed some way to make money while travelling. Florence was an ideal place to study TEFL on my way to Sicily where my girlfriend currently lives. Florence is also a beautiful city that I have always wanted to go to.
- What are all the ways that Florence is different than your city/town?
While Florence feels somewhat similar to Edinburgh in its stunning architecture and small-town feel, it certainly is different in many ways. For one thing, the clear importance of food in Florence (an Italy in general) is something I have picked up on since I got here. Another thing I noticed was the church bells – we have plenty of churches in Edinburgh, but they stay pretty quiet! It was always nice to know if my alarm didn’t wake me up in the morning, the Basilica di Santa Maria Novella bells would!
- What were you most surprised to learn about Italy or Florence?
I have visited Italy a few times, so I was familiar with a lot of things about the country. I was really shocked by how busy it was in Florence when I arrived (in February!). I didn’t realize it was such a tourist hotspot, but it definitely makes sense when you look at scale of architectural, artistic and cultural significance of the place. As this was my first time driving in northern Italy, I was also a little surprised the drivers here aren’t quite as crazy as in the south.
- Did you experience any culture shock?
NO BIG BOXES OF TEABAGS IN GROCERY STORES!!! In the UK, they’re available in boxes of 100 minimum. We’re tea people.
- What do you miss most about your country?
Apart from the aforementioned lack of teabag bulk-buying ability, I miss good Scottish beer. You can find some Scottish beer here such as Innis and Gunn, but they’re so expensive!
- What are your top three favorite places in Florence?
My top three favorite places are; Piazzale Michelangelo, Giardino Bardini and the Ponte Vecchio.
- Favorite moment in class at Via Lingua:
My favorite moments came during my first teaching practice, when I realized I have the public speaking skills to teach effectively. Instructor feedback conferences were always really useful to hear what to work on as well.
- Favorite activity at Via Lingua:
My favorite activity at Via Lingua was the Italian language lessons – a really fun way to learn the local language while having the valuable experience of seeing what it’s like to learn a completely new language.
- What are some tips you have for people who want to become TEFL certified?
My tip would be not to worry too much about the teaching practice. It’s easy to get nervous and tense up but it goes much more smoothly if you just relax! Afterall, this is what you’re training to do. Another tip is to keep up with the grammar homework. You’ll learn much faster if you have an idea of what the concept is before it’s taught in class.
- What are your plans after Via Lingua Florence?
After Florence, I plan to head down to Sicily to live with my girlfriend for the next few months before we both go back to Scotland toward the end of the year. Whilst there I hope to have a job teaching online a few hours a week. I also hope to build a network of private students in the area surrounding Mount Etna, which is where I’ll be staying.