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“Hello Teacher Din!” A warm greeting from my student whenever I open my camera and start my class.
I never had a boring day with my students. I started with Acadsoc about 8 months ago. I’m a teacher by profession and have been teaching in the field for several years. However, ESL Online Teaching is a whole new experience for me. At first, I was really hesitant diving into this type of teaching but things got easier the moment I spoke with my first Chinese student. Her willingness to learn the English language was radiating into my brain and into my heart. I remember the first lesson we had which was under Learn and Talk II, Hobbies. I thought I was ready and equipped with different teaching strategies just like whenever I teach in a classroom but online teaching is all about finding the needs of the student in terms of learning English and focus on that throughout the course of her learning development.
There are also challenges in online teaching. Aside from the most common problem such as bad internet connection, there are also challenges that will measure your flexibility as teacher such as student with zero foundation in English, 3 to 6 years old students, and a very easy lesson. Let me share some thoughts on how I managed to surpass these challenges.
First, a student with zero foundation in English could be very difficult to teach. It takes a lot of effort to teach this type of student for you cannot just rely on your speaking ability but also you need to include some gestures to convey the things you want to teach. My pace of speaking to this type of student is usually slow to utterly and clearly deliver my statement. Basic or simple sentences could be very effective for the student to cope up with the lesson. Also, don’t forget some forms of affirmations from student to make sure he/she understood what you did or said.
Second, students who are at 3 to 6 years old are as challenging as baby sitting some toddlers. Teaching these students requires high energy delivery of the teaching materials. Proper gestures, loud and clear voice, and some props would really help you throughout your class. Most of these students are visual learners who can easily learn by observation and kinesthetic learners who can easily learn by doing. Last, there are lessons that can be very easy to your student. You would normally finish the class in less than 25 minutes. You will definitely worry of the remaining time and think what to do. This is the part where you need to go extra mile. You can make some supplementary activities to maximize your time. I tell you, they like activities. So, unleash your creativity and provide some fun and educational activities.
If you are working eight hours a day and fully booked, it could be very tiring. But with the power of passion in teaching, every day is rewarding. The moment you teach something new to your student and understood it, then that’s a great achievement already. It is always good to hear whenever your student would say; “Thank you teacher. I have learned a lot today”.