Unlike traditional brick-and-mortar classrooms, everything in an online classroom happens in a virtual environment; but it does not mean that you don’t need anything to equip your environment for more productive online classrooms; To make sure your classes run smoothly, you need to make sure you have the right equipment for the classroom environment. Here are a few things that you should have in place before you start teaching English online:
A proper background
First, your teaching environment should be separated from the rest of your home, well-lit, and quiet. One way to set up the tone for your classroom is to prepare a background that can be either simple, engaging, or even extravagant; It’s totally up to you; be creative and stand out among other online teachers.
An ergonomic chair
You’d better not underestimate the role of a suitable and ergonomic chair so that you won’t struggle with neck and back pain after a few months. When buying a chair, you need to consider the seat and back material, and its adjustable features (its height, armrest, and tilt tension). Leather or thick fabric chairs are cushy and more attractive but they heat up fast, so be cautious; you’re going to work from home even during hot seasons, aren’t you? So try to pick up a chair with a more breathable back and seat material.
Laptop and computer stand
Another item for having a healthy neck is a stand for your screen; it helps you adjust your screen to the same level as your eyes. If you are hunching over your laptop while working, it will leave you with horrible neck and shoulder pain after a while. Using a stand helps to elevate your screen to your eye level and creates a healthier posture.
A computer with a webcam and microphone (or headset)
This is the most important item on this list because it’s the only way you’ll be able to communicate with your students—and they will expect excellent quality audio and video.
A good internet connection
A good internet connection is essential to running a successful online English teaching class. How you connect to your students and the internet will determine how many of them stay with you, so it’s important to take into account factors such as:
- The type of device that you use as your computer.
- The amount of time it takes for web pages to load when using your preferred browser (Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer) on different websites (Facebook and YouTube).
- Whether or not the internet connection drops out when someone else uses it at home or in the office at work (e.g., watching videos online). In other words, what kind of “lag” do students experience during live video sessions?
Having to stay at home for long hours can cause a real sense of depression for those who love the outdoors. Indoor plants can have significant benefits for you and improve your productivity and satisfaction on the job. Greens can purify the air, increase humidity and make your online teaching decor more pleasant.
Based on the age of your students, you can prepare different realia & props as teaching aids. (educational materials such as maps, flashcards, storybooks, etc) Props are great visual aids for students’ comprehension and also efficient tools for teachers to convey educational content. Use colorful, fun, and engaging props with kids to attract their attention. Although you need fewer realia to teach your adult students, they can learn better if you provide them with different relative and informative realia.
Preparing for your online English teaching class is important, but it doesn’t have to be complicated. All you need is a good internet connection, a quiet place to teach, and a comfortable chair and table for your computer. If you don’t have these things yet, start by getting them together now so that you can get started on this exciting journey as soon as possible!