Empowering women in business to speak English Confidently!

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If you’re teaching English online, it can be difficult to translate a lot of things you may do in class into an online platform. I’m going to provide you with some tips and tricks with the next few blog posts that can help you create a professional and creative “Virtual Classroom”. Today we’re going to start with the basics: how to set up your actual teaching space to help elevate your online teaching.

Create a Professional Online English Teaching Space

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Make sure you have a quiet and secluded space where you can teach without any distractions. Preferable somewhere with a clear background (white space if possible, but it’s not always necessary). I would avoid having pictures or anything on the wall behind you to avoid distractions. Consider this space your office and make sure it is clean and organized so you always know where everything is. Make sure your space is comfortable for you! Sit in a comfy chair, set your computer a good height for you with space to write and move as needed. Give your video a try first to see where you’re at and can move around and still be seen.

Dress Professionally

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Dress like you are going to your job. From the top-down anyways, you want to wear something that looks clean, put together and professional. Try to avoid anything with pictures or sayings on it. A clean collared shirt or a nice sweater would do! 

Have Helpful Online English Teaching supplies

As a teacher, you will need some basic supplies to help keep you organized and on the ball with your teaching. Make sure you have pens (you could even go crazy and get some different coloured ones, to colour coat your notes!), a notebook or pad of paper, and a calendar or planner. These are the essentials! Not too much right? A pen and paper to take notes during your classes and a calendar or planner to track your schedule. The calendar and planner are a great way to track your classes and write down your students’ names so you can keep track and remember who you’re teaching at what time. As most of it will be done online, you won’t need too many supplies for yourself. Any must-have items you use? Let me know! 

Teaching Props

Now I know these probably aren’t essentials….however if you want to set yourself apart and keep your students engaged (which means more classes for you!), having some teaching props can really add a lot to the classroom. They can also be helpful for teaching vocabulary (although pictures will also do the trick). Here are some items that will help you as an online teacher:  

  • A small whiteboard and marker
  • Puppets or stuffed animals (for kids obviously)
  • Magazines, newspapers
  • Children‘s books are great resources for shapes, colours, animals and basic vocabulary.
Teach English Online with Premier TEFL

Want to really up-grade your teaching props and classroom? Have a look at ESL Gems for great props and backgrounds.

Use Realia props!

The easiest props you can have is using simple things around your house! Need to teach vocabulary? Grab some things from around your house and use them in your lessons. Get shampoo and soap from your bathroom or forks, knives, and plates from your kitchen. You can use anything!

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Notebook, coffee cup, envelopes…whatever you can find!

Download pictures to help with vocabulary if you don’t have props at home or use Youtube for videos that might help support your lessons.  

Get Creative and Don’t Be Afraid to Try New Things!

Feel free to get creative with your “online space” teaching English online. Decorate it for major holidays like Christmas, Easter, Hanukkah, whatever holidays you celebrate. A fun activity for students young and old could be to decorate their space with their famous holidays (or yours if they want to). It makes your classes a little more interactive and memorable and gives both you and your students an opportunity to learn about different holidays. 

For more information about how to prepare yourself for teaching English online check out this great article from JIMMYESL to help get you started!

What do you do to elevate your online classroom? Comment below!

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