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How to adapt to teaching online

Welcome to another episode of The Art of Business English. This is part two of my series into how to improve your skills as an online teacher.

For a long time there was a debate around online teaching. The COVID pandemic has shifted the thinking a lot. Education, methods, disciplines and content has been changing forever.

This year’s events have created what some may refer to as an opportunity. No opportunity comes without its challenges. Mostly what we’ve seen is a replication of what’s been happening in the classroom for decades, moving online.

Using technology in the day-to-day business of keeping in touch with students, sending reminders, sharing pictures and videos setting assignments and tests have to be rethought for online classes.

So, how can we improve and adapt to teaching online. Read, listen or watch to get the full picture.

Watch the episode here

Using and digital tools

Suddenly YouTube videos and channels, WhatsApp and other such digital content. All these were supplements and add-ons to the classroom teaching, activities, projects, workshops and seminars. But during this extraordinary situation of complete lockdown these technologies become the primary source and not just add-ons.

So, what's the issue?

Neophobia and technophobia

Online teaching/learning has many challenges. First is neophobia, fear of new things closely followed by technophobia. Technology for example, means glitches and one has to learn to adapt to it. What does that mean? Recovery, comfort, no panicking... new sets of techniques.

Juggling family life with work

In classrooms, students enjoy and remember the nuances of a teacher, the gestures and the expressions all of which add to the experience of classroom teaching. How should teachers prep for this? Work, life balance has to be managed.

Teaching in a school classroom and teaching from the ‘comfort’ of home are different. Managing the household chores as well as getting ready for online classes is demanding on the mental and physical stamina. But we teachers are superhumans.

Online is not for everyone

It turns out that online classes are not for every student. It might sound obvious, but some people simply don’t enjoy studying online, preferring face-to-face lessons. I tried my best to convert them, offering a free online trial lesson.

One-to-one is demanding on your attention

It’s important to remember that you can’t switch off in a one-to-one lesson. You can only set pair work if you become your student’s partner. You have to be on the ball and be flexible, ready to change the lesson plan on the spot if the situation requires. This last point is worth repeating changing lesson plans on the spot.

Technical barriers for teachers

For some students (and teachers), technology can be a headache: too many buttons to press, fear of failure. Technology is the trickiest aspect of online teaching, but it’s just a matter of playing with it and adapting. My advice is to be patient and use every opportunity for the student to learn. You can watch as many tutorials as you want, but the best tactic is to learn by doing, and you’ll get the hang of it once you do it yourself.

Planning from the student’s perspective

The key to a successful online learning experience for your students is to think about all aspects of the classroom from their perspective. This means designing the material and sessions as if you were sitting in their chair.

How to teach languages online

If you’re ready to take control of your career, earn more, and find independence from working for underpaying language academies, there’s a very good chance I can help you. I recommend all teachers shift at least 50% of their work online immediately.

Final thoughts

Making the transition to teaching online is no longer an option. If you want to stay relevant and offer flexible, hybrid learning experiences, then you should be moving 50% of your business online, now. 

If you want a fast-track system to get you there, then enrol now in my course, "How to teach languages online", where I hold your hand every step of the way throughout the whole process. 

Click below to get full access to the course. 

I hope you enjoyed this episode, if you did then please take a minute to give us a 5-star rating over at iTunes, it would mean a lot to me and help me reach more people. 

If you have any questions or comments regarding this episode then feel free to leave us a comment below. 

See you next week! 

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Andrew is the CEO and founder of the Art of Business English. Besides teaching and coaching native Spanish speakers in Business English, he is also passionate about mountain biking, sailing and healthy living. When He is not working, Andrew loves to spend time with his family and friends.

Andrew Ambrosius

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