I just had the privilege to be teaching again. This time, as an online English teacher for Koreans, Taiwanese and Japanese. I feel blessed to have been in a country were English is a second language. Having training in a call center firm truly has it’s perks. Now that being said, let me share to you some tips you need in order to be geared in this kind of profession.
Now, for all of you who aspires to be an work-at-home online English teacher, here are some requirements that you would need:
A teacher’s must-have behavioral skills:
1. Patience, lots and lots of it – There’s no amount words can ever explain this. You need to have the patience to teach your students to learn. Your students would only be willing to learn to from you if you’re more than willing to be patient with them. And though sometimes, your students can be a little hard to teach due to their think accent and some idioms that your students aren’t accustomed to using, just give them time to learn. Make it fun for them to do so while you’re at it so that the learning process would be much meaningful.
2. Always be polite – You need to treat each student with respect and be polite always, regardless of their age, gender, nationality or ability (or inability) to pick-up from your teaching lessons. Their learning phase would be dependent on how you treat your students. So treat them right and they would keep coming back for more.
3. Always be on time – Just cause you’re at home and not going to commute your way to a physical classroom doesn’t give you an excuse to be late even if you’re just meeting each other online. You still need to treat you students with professional courtesy as a sign of respect for their time. Remember, their still paying you so you’d better give them their money’s worth.
4. Let them express themselves – Remember that you’re teaching them English just as so that learn to express themselves. So stay away from describing about yourself too much and let them talk, write, sing a song, make a poem, etc and express and be themselves. It’s a good way for them to exercise that skill.
A teacher’s must-have communication and planning skills:
1. English Proficiency – obviously, you need to have that confidence and mastery of the English language to be able to teach. Writing and communicating in English are 2 different skills sets but if you have talent on both, the better. You can practice your communication skills by simply looking at the mirror and talking (about anything under the sun) The more you practice, the better you’d be.
2. Have an assessment session – you need to gauge your student’s capability on how well your would-be student is versed (or needs to improve of) in the English language. Tip: you can start with a 10 to 20 min. conversation with your would-be student, followed by a simple assessment sheet where in you would gauge his/her speaking, listening and vocabulary skills gauging where your student belongs to the beginners, intermediate or advance level.
3. Have a lesson plan – Once you’ve gauged your would-be student’s capacity, it’s time that you plan your next course of action by making yourself a lesson plan. Click here to have an idea to how to make one.
Now that we’re done the human side of the teaching, let’s discuss about the technical aspect of it:
1. A good PC/laptop
– OS Version:
- Windows XP
- Windows Vista
- Windows 7
– (32-bit and 64-bit versions supported)
– Processor At least 1GHz
– RAM At least 256 MB
– Additional software DirectX v9.0 or above
- A good webcam
- A good headset (you really need to invest on this cause if your students can’t hear you or you can’t hear them, your dead meat)
– Communication software/tool:
- A SKYPE account. (Skype can also be used with Mac or Linux)
– A good, stable internet connection
Now, there are a lot of jobs open right now at sulit.com.ph, jobstreetDB, or even at odesk.com to name a few.
These that I’ve described are just the basic. You may encounter bumps and bruises along that way (for sure) as teaching is a process that takes time. But as long as you go at time with consistency and tenancy, you’ll get there eventually.
Did you have any comments/suggestions/violent reactions? Please post them here. I’d love to read all about them.