Teaching English online can be very rewarding, particularly when you have the adequate up-to-date methods, tools, and resources under your belt. This combination will give you the help you need and provide the confidence needed to provide a first-class teaching service to your students.
Table of Contents
- 1 Adequate Tools to Utilize
- 2 Teaching Methods to Utilize
- 3 Adequate Resources to Utilize
- 4 Noteworthy Tips
Adequate Tools to Utilize
Technology is progressing in great measure. Every couple of weeks, there is a new tablet or smartphone on the market that rapidly gets surrounded by immense hype from both consumers and media alike. Even though tablets and smartphones are convenient, it is important that online ESL teachers opt for a regular laptop or desktop. These types of computers reflect professionalism and allow you to interact more effectively with your students.
Having the proper headset will allow your voice to be heard nice and clear at all times. Before purchasing one, go through high-quality headsets that are made by respected brands and find out which one best meets your preferences, by reading the specifications, and reviews that they have received from consumers. If you can splurge on an extra headset that would be best as well since you never know when it will be needed. Having a headset on reserve is always a good idea.
Your camera has to be of high-quality in order to teach online. Many new laptops already come with high-quality cameras, but make sure that you look at the specs before making a purchase. Just like you should when searching for the perfect headset, you should also read reviews and specifications of the camera that has caught your eye. Remember that the lighting in the space that you are planning to teach from has to be bright. Your students must be able to always have a clear view of you. Make sure that the camera is facing you directly. You want your eyes to look straight ahead, not up or down at the camera, as this will just distract your students from learning properly.
There are different platforms that you can choose from to provide your teaching service to students. There is Skype, which seems to be the preferred tool, as it is extremely reliable. Plus, many students are already familiar with Skype.777 Skype has a free tool named Talk and Write which is a whiteboard and drawing tool. There is also Scribblar, a free online whiteboard tutoring program that permits audio conferencing. The only way to find out which one you will prefer the most is to test them both!
Many teachers have moved over to Zoom. Zoom adds in extra functionality along with a better connection in many cases. Zoom is also preferable for when you have group lesson and it allows you want to record a lesson. You can record lessons with Skype as well by using third party applications but with Zoom the lessons are already stored for you.
Zoom can become rather expensive when you add on a lot of features. It is recommended for when you start to build your student base and can take on the extra costs. It is easier to onboard students using Skype since most students have used it in the past.7
This site is a free tool that allows online ESL teachers to plan their lessons or projects. You can utilize it to even keep track of notes and ideas on new lessons and to stay in touch with students.
Teaching Methods to Utilize
This is the system I use that is fully capable of providing lessons and tracking students:
Off2Class has become a great resource for teachers that need material for online teaching, want to track student progress, assign homework, evaluate students and more. They continue to innovate and their latest tool is an interactive classroom that is easily accessible by both the teacher and student.
The library of ESL lessons is over 300 and continues to grow on a weekly basis. The fee that you pay for students is minimal when you consider the cost for a teacher to develop and learning management system that you get with Off2Class.
If you click on this link you will receive $5 off your first payment of Off2Class. Let me know if you signup through the referral link and I will show you how to white label OffClass.
In order to learn English fluently, it is necessary for students to emerge in the language outside their virtual classroom, too. Find and share movies, music, and eBooks in the English language and encourage them to enjoy them on a daily basis after class. It is crucial to notify your students that learning English doesn’t stop when class finishes.
One method to take advantage of is assigning a video and then proceeding to talk to your students about it. Discussion allows different points of views to be established, and thus, different thoughts will emerge that will make students think outside the box.
This is a free application that will permit your students to emerge more in the English language, as it goes through basic English words that are heard on a daily basis in English-speaking countries.
You can track the progress of your students through DuoLingo. It gives teachers a weekly report along with the ability to assign new tasks.
DuoLingo also has a teacher certification program. This program allows you to better understand the system while you earn a certificate after passing the course and becoming a certified DuoLingo teacher.
Encourage your students to download free printable flashcards. Eslflashcards.com offers free printable flash cards that contain colorful pictures. They are easy to download and print. No registration is required.
Assign your students to hear and read a short-story online. Esl-Bits.net is a site that is replete of short-stories for students who are trying to build their English vocabulary.
One method that will facilitate learning is to collect and assign homework through a cloud-based file-sharing website. This can be a timesaver and a stress-reducer solution for students, as there are some files that tend to be too large to attach to an email. You can opt to use Google Drive, DropBox, or Sugar Sync.
Adequate Resources to Utilize
As an online ESL teacher, it is a must that you are always up-to-date with everything that is occurring in your field. There are many resources online that you can visit, but only a few of them contain helpful content.
A site that contains meaningful content is off2class.com, a website designed for private ESL tutors and teachers. It has a library that has over 150 lesson plans! Another great resource is reallifeglobal.com, a site that contains 500 articles, videos, and podcasts for online ESL teachers. Englishfluencynow.com is an option that offers high-quality upper intermediate and advanced English materials for teachers.
When it comes to your persona, make sure that you present yourself in a professional manner. Before you begin to teach, you should silence your phone and close YouTube, email, and Facebook accounts. If you opt not to do so, it will look extremely unprofessional when you begin a screen share. The chances of you losing students will be grand in nature. Another thing, the space that you are planning to teach from should be free of clutter. The fewer things you have around you, the more professional you will appear to your students.
Boost The Confidence Of Your Students
You will notice that a lot of your students will have a lack of confidence when pronouncing words, as they will overthink, thinking that they might mess up. There will be some students who will be too afraid to speak up, but this fear can subside if you inform them that the only way to learn is to make mistakes. Not even Einstein was born knowing everything. Everybody starts from zero in every aspect. Even though this is common sense, a lot of people often forget about this truth. One of your duties as a teacher is to boost your students’ self-confidence so that they can go out into the real world and speak the English language without any type of fear holding them back.
Following the previously mentioned adequate methods, tools, and resources can definitely aid you in being the best online ESL teacher that you can be. Put them to the test and see for yourself!