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Sometimes, this question seems to be dogmatic. Like: If you don’t use your own material, you’re not a real teacher.

So let’s have a look at both possibilities, textbooks or own material.

Working with your own material

In most cases, “own material” is not as original as the expression suggests. When preparing their own material, teachers use texts from the internet, videos, pictures, excerpts and exercises from grammar books etc.

Authentic material taken from websites or newspapers for native speakers often has to be adapted,

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At the end of last year, I decided to raise my italki rates considerably. However, I felt bad about suddenly charging my current students 8 -10 US$ more per hour and tried to find a solution.

Other teachers group their students meaning that a student who already started to learn with them two years ago may book a different course at a lower price. It’s a possibility but I don’t like it very much.

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In this article, I’d like to talk about how to provide material when conducting an online lesson.

How do you present your material? How do you make it available to your students?

I’m not going to talk about what kind of material is most appropriate to use. This is actually a topic I intend to cover in my next article.

In general, you have these possibilities to  provide material: 

  1. Send it by email before the lesson
  2. Send it through Skype before or during the lesson
  3. Share your screen during the lesson
  4. Share links to websites or videos during the lesson
  5. Give your students the possibility to download the material

So,

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Some time ago, an English teacher in a Facebook group expressed her surprise about a student who had told her how important it was for him to have a good and personal relationship with the teacher.

Being as much a teacher as a student, I know 1:1 sessions from both perspectives and the importance of a good and personal relationship between a teacher and a student doesn’t surprise me at all.

How a teacher changed my life with his personal approach towards students

When I was seventeen,

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My rental contract for my apartment in Portugal ends in February and I’m really anxious to leave. One year in the same place is too long for me, especially when the place is a small village.

Wanderlust

I already became aware of this after about three months and it became even more obvious when I travelled to Thessaloniki to attend the Polyglot Conference at the end of October.

Even though the winter months are not my favourite time of the year to travel to Central and East Europe,

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It’s the nightmare of every digital nomad online teacher:  You come to a new place and discover that the internet sucks.

This is exactly what happened to me when I arrived in Prague a couple of days ago.  I had rented an AirBnB room and had told my host that I needed fast and reliable internet. She had assured me that it wouldn’t be a problem. Well, it was a problem. I nevertheless managed to teach all my scheduled lessons.

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If you teach on italki, you probably know this scenario: It’s Tuesday 10:00 am and a student sends you a reschedule request for the lesson at 11:00 am on Wednesday. Often without any explanations, no sorry, nothing, just taking it for granted that this is totally acceptable.

Of course, you could offer Instant Tutoring in the free hour but if you have other lessons from 10 – 11 am and then at 12:00 pm,

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Conferences can be quite exhausting for introverts and I have to admit that I had mixed feelings about the Polyglot Conference for all those months since I bought the ticket until I finally went there.

I still remembered my DNX failure from May 2015 too well. The DNX is a conference for digital nomads, about the same size as the Polyglot Conference as far as the number of participants is concerned.

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When you only use a platform like italki to offer your lessons, you don’t necessarily need an email list. Some teachers ask their students for their email address in order to send them material by email. However, according to the laws of many countries, this doesn’t give you the right to start sending marketing emails without asking for permission.

Why email marketing?

But once you start with your own website, you need to start building your email list,

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So you have decided that you want to start your own online business as a language teacher. You may have already bought a domain and web space, made yourself familiar with some WordPress basics, bought a nice-looking theme ….. but no content yet.

The blank screen syndrome

You stare at your screen and try to think of something unique to write about. You start typing, you hesitate …. and start thinking again:

  • Hasn’t that been written by someone much more knowledgeable than me?

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