4 Tips for a Great Start and a Great Class
So, you've finally decided to take the leap into online teaching, you've signed up for every Facebook group and you've reached out to teachers and you've bought the headset (and maybe a new computer!). You've decided that Qkids is the place for you, you've applied and, maybe, you're even doing demo classes. But what comes next?
|Jason Stacy: Tip Giver Extraordinaire!|
Here's a secret: no Facebook group will tell you what I'm about to tell you. There might be a thousand posts about teaching tips or tricks… but some things, well, some things you just have to see for yourself. I have taught over 800 classes for Qkids, and the most important thing I have learned (and that I wish I would have known from the beginning!) is that a great class starts with a great introduction. Let me tell you how to do it.
Great Start For a Great Class!
General Tips Get into class early so you can start class off with a bang! With Qkids we generally teach 1v4, and you'll want to have time to speak to every child. Happy students make for a fun class, for both students and teachers, and a good introduction will have students ready to go! So be there early… and be ready!
Greetings Let the students know you're happy to see them! You'll want to tweak this a little, depending on level, but it's almost always the same… as soon as the camera comes up I'm waving and saying, "Hello, students! Welcome, welcome!" When I can see the kids I say, "Ok, let me say hello to you…", and then I begin. I'll put each child on stage individually, and then it'll go like this:
"Hello, I'm a teacher Jason, what's your name?"
"Nice to meet you, ……"
"Nice to meet you, too!"
The kids almost always know how to say, "Nice to meet you, "no matter their level: if you say anything else it might confuse the younger kiddos--stick to"nice to meet you". After that, ask them something about themselves: if you're new, you might want to stick to asking about their favorite color… but the very best way I know to get the kids excited is with stickers.
Stickers: Learn them and love them. As a new teacher, you will not be familiar with every sticker… but if want to really engage the kids, you'll want to learn them as soon as you can! The stickers are grouped by type: smiley faces at the top, and then superheroes, and then weather, animals, fruit, a couple miscellaneous stickers, and then vehicles (including rockets and a UFO!).
If a child mentions"Ultraman" or "Superman," you'll know it's at the top; dinosaurs are in the middle; cars at the bottom. The stickers can be shrunk or enlarged, and spun around: nothing makes a child laugh harder than a fire truck spinning around a tornado, guaranteed! It's easy to do, lots of fun and the kids love it!
You'll have as much fun doing it as the kids will, and with a little practice, you'll become a pro. To do it really well, you'll want a mouse with a scrolling wheel in the center, between the two buttons… and with just a little practice you'll be shooting fireworks out of Ne Zha's feet in no time! The kids absolutely love it and, most importantly, you'll have a class full of engaged and ready-to-learn students.
Adapting For New Learners You can do a great introduction, but it will mean nothing if the children can't understand you! Your greeting isn't just a way to introduce yourself: it's also a quick way to assess the students. When you ask a child their name, if they have to look over to a parent for assistance, you'll know right away you have a new learner, and you'll have to adapt your introduction accordingly.
Slow your speech down, use lots of gestures (we call that TPR, you'll learn all about that!) say, "nice to meet you!" and give them a sticker. All kids like the panda and dolphin, the little girls really like the butterfly and the little boys love Ironman. Show them you're happy they're there: the child may not understand your language but they can understand your intent. A happy and engaged teacher means the same thing in every language!
I use these four things in every lesson, and they have worked for me throughout the past 800 lessons: I know they will work for you! A great introduction puts students (and parents) in a good mood, and ensures you'll have a great class. Try these tips out, you'll see!
One other thing: I am happy to help anyone begin their teaching journey. I'd love to guide you through the hiring process, and share some of what I've learned: click here to start! https://teacher.qkids.com/ref?code=QAWSJE And if you have any other questions about teaching, let me know: I'm happy to help! Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.