Top 6 Tips for New Qkids Teachers
My name is Teacher Ruth. What’s your… Sorry, I forgot I am writing this for adults! I have been teaching with Qkids for over three years and I still look forward to going to the classroom. When I am not teaching, I am coding, reading, or watching TEFL videos.
I would like to share some tips for new Qkids teachers. Those first few weeks of teaching can be daunting. Learning the platform, dealing with any technical problems that may arise, familiarizing oneself with the curriculum, and those last-minute classes (standbys or oops, the scheduled class isn’t the one I prepared for!). I am a note-taker. For every class I teach, I try and prepare notes ahead of time. It helps me with timing. Knowing which activities are associated with each slide makes it easier to adjust my pace when necessary. Having those notes removes a lot of the stress from both standby classes and unexpected schedule changes. As a new teacher, there will many new classes for you to both teach and learn. To ease your way, try some of the following:
1. Write Down the Vocabulary for Each Class.
This is especially helpful if there is a quiz at the end of class or if the vocabulary consists of phrases. Usually, if there is a quiz, the items for the quiz will be in the same order as they are listed on the pre-greeting screen. Knowing the vocabulary for a lesson can help with those tricky slides. Is this the ‘write’ slide or the ‘homework’ slide? Is this slide ‘walk’ or ‘go for a walk’? For us, the difference might be slight, but when students prepare themselves for ‘go for a walk’ that’s what they expect to hear the teacher say.
2. Write Down the Target Sentence.
This is a good reference tool to use while teaching. ‘There is a map on the wall.’ is a very different sentence from ‘it’s a map’. Also, it’s a good way to extend either the class or a game (bingo for instance). Play once using just a word or phrase. Replay using the vocabulary in a complete(target) sentence. This recycles both the vocabulary and the target sentence.
3. Know Which Activities Are Usually Quick and Which Ones Require More Time.
This is sometimes determined by the students themselves. Often, for upper-level classes, the free talk activity can be very quick. Many students just don’t like to type. However, sometimes the whole class wants to write a novel. Stay flexible with your timing and know where you can save time(choral reading vs individual reading, etc) and have some activities for extending the class if necessary. Also, if you find an activity is consistently taking too much or too little time, ask other teachers for ideas on how to extend(or shorten) that activity.
4. If You Have Time Before Class, Look at the Vocabulary and Target Sentence From the Prior Class(ES).
For instance, it’s good to know if the students have learned colors and which numerals. If I’m not sure about something, I will ask the students ‘Have you learned _______ yet?’ or ‘Do you know______?’ Don’t be afraid to ask the students for help. (Even if you think you know the answer.) They like it!
5. I Correct Pronunciation and Grammar but Not ‘Facts'.
I had a student (repeating from a parent) tell me that elephants are omnivores. I simply said ‘Oh, I thought they were herbivores!’ and moved on. This was not the class where they were learning herbivore, carnivore, and omnivore. Some students get rather upset if you prove them wrong and they like to argue(debate)! This uses class time in a way that isn’t necessarily productive so unless it’s material being covered or it’s a 1-v-1 class, just let it go. I had a 1-v-1 student tell me that 11AM is in the afternoon. I told him that in America, it’s in the morning. He quickly changed directions and told me ‘Good evening’. No more arguments and he saved face by my not driving the point home. We had a great class, too.
6. No Matter How the Class Is Going, Keep Smiling.
The students might be having a bad day. Your smile and patient encouragement can help them do better in this class and those to come. Students do appreciate both your patience and your smile. I had an upper-level student stay after class just so he could encourage me! There were two students in the classroom and there was about a 5-year age difference. The younger student only had one volume, EXPLOSIVE. Not angry, just loud, and he wanted to talk through the whole class. The mute button is helpful, but he still needed his turn to speak. After class(waiting for the younger student to leave), the older student said ‘He was soooo loud but you just kept smiling!’ Precious!
I hope these tips are helpful and if you are not already a Qkids teacher and would like to become one, apply through Teacher Ruth using referral code: AMXAXM
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