5 Must-have Classroom Props for Teaching English Online
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So you’ve decided to teach English online? Well done! You’re about to embark on one of the wildest adventures you can have, uh, in your own home. But are you sure you’re prepared? Besides having the right qualifications and satisfying the requirements needed to teach online, there are a few other essentials you need to make sure you have before you log on to chat to your first student.
Of course it goes without saying that you have a laptop or PC, headset with microphone, and a stable internet connection. If you have power issues (South Africans, we see you) make sure you have a back-up battery pack and UPS so as not to interrupt your lessons if the power goes out.
It’s also a good idea to have a comfortable chair to sit on, considering you’ll be sitting in it for your entire working day. Plus you might need a laptop stand so that your laptop is at the appropriate level to make sure your students aren’t looking down your shirt during your lessons.
Is that it?
Well, while you can get by with just the basics, you’ll be a much more successful teacher – and a much more popular one – if you have a few extra props at hand during your lessons. Considering many online teaching jobs rely on returning students – i.e. students booking lessons with you again – you want to make as good an impression as possible. So here are five must-have props for teaching English online.
What is behind you in an online lesson is very important. It makes sense to have a wall behind you that you can decorate appropriately. No matter if you are teaching youngsters or adults, you should have your name displayed somewhere behind you. It’s helpful for first-time students so they don’t have to keep asking you your name or calling you ma’am or sir, and it’s good for younger students to practise their reading and pronunciation. This can be a simple printout with your name written on it, or it can be a colourful poster. It’s also a nice idea to have your national flag on display behind you so the students know where you are from. If you are teaching Young Learners, add some colourful bunting or well-known characters, or you could have a world map or a few nice pictures which can be used as conversation starters.
An absolute must! Whiteboards can be used to write down vocabulary items, explain language points, display pictures – there are so many ways you can use a whiteboard. Because they’re magnetic, they can be used with magnetic letters and numbers; plus it’s much easier (and cheaper) to put up pictures with a magnet rather than blu-tak. Don’t forget your markers and an eraser!
Scoreboard or reward chart
Depending on the age of your student, you will need a scoreboard or a reward chart. This can be a simple white board or chart which you put stickers or points on. Even better is if you have a magnetic board (like a mini white board) which you can put magnets on so it is reusable. Reward charts help students see their progress and motivates them to achieve targets. They are especially useful in group classes to introduce an element of competition into the lesson.
Puppets and soft toys
First of all, a soft toy can act as a class mascot for younger learners. The mascot can greet the students and introduce the lesson theme. Similarly finger puppets are a great way to demonstrate a dialogue or activity.
Realia are as important in an online classroom as they are in a physical classroom. Realia include everyday objects that are referred to in the lesson. This can be anything from food to stationery to clothing. Realia help students make a connection between the word and its meaning, while also making the language more memorable. It is also one way to introduce authenticity in the EFL classroom.
There you go – now you’re all set to teach English online!
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- If we find that the personal information we are processing about you is inaccurate, we will take appropriate steps to correct the information.
Personal information is no longer needed by ELEARNING FUTURES LTD but needed by you in connection with a legal claim
- In most circumstances, we will securely delete or dispose of personal information when we no longer need it for our legitimate business purposes. Our approach to retention is outlined in our corporate retention schedules.
- However, if the personal information we no longer need would assist you in establishing, exercising or defending a legal claim, you can require us to keep the information for as long as necessary. We may ask you to provide an explanation and any available supporting evidence that a legal claim is ongoing or contemplated.
Right to erasure of personal data (“the right to be forgotten”)
In the following circumstances, you have the right to require that ELEARNING FUTURES LTD securely deletes or destroys your personal information:
- If the personal information we hold about you is no longer necessary for the purposes for which we originally collected it.
- The processing is based on consent – if you have previously given your consent to ELEARNING FUTURES LTD collecting and processing your personal information, and you notify us that you withdraw your consent. Please note: withdrawing your consent does not mean the processing of your personal data which occurred before the withdrawal was unlawful.
- We are processing your personal information for direct marketing purposes, and you want us to stop.
- If you think ELEARNING FUTURES LTD has processed your personal information unlawfully.
If you think any of the above situations apply, we may ask you for an explanation and further information to verify this.
Right to object to processing
You have the right to object to the ELEARNING FUTURES LTD processing your personal data in the following circumstances:
Personal information used for direct marketing
If we are using your personal information to send you direct marketing, you have the right to object at any time. If you exercise this right, we will stop processing your personal information for direct marketing purposes. However, we may keep your information on a “suppression list” to ensure your information is not added to any marketing lists at some point in the future.
Automated decision making and profiling
- ‘Profiling’ is the automated use of personal data held on a computer to analyse or predict things that have a legal effect, or other similarly significant effects, on the individual. Examples would include economic situation, health, personal preferences or interests and location. You have the right not to be subject to a solely automated decision (that is, a decision made electronically, with no human intervention), and this may include profiling (although there is no general right to object to profiling). If you are concerned the ELEARNING FUTURES LTD has made a solely automated decision about you, you can object.
- Please note, ELEARNING FUTURES LTD is allowed to carry out automated decisions with no human intervention where you have given your explicit consent to this processing (although you have the right to withdraw your consent).
- We are also permitted to make automated decisions with no human intervention in the following circumstances:
- The automated decision is necessary to enter into, or perform a contract, or complete a contract involving you and the ELEARNING FUTURES LTD.
- The automated decision is allowed under a law passed at the European Union level, or at the level of the European Union or EEA member state level (i.e., is allowed under national law). The law will provide safeguards to protect your rights and freedoms.
However, you still have a general right to object in both of the above circumstances, providing reasons why you think the processing is having a negative effect on you. If you do object, we will carefully consider your reasons, and decide whether to review the decision-making process in your specific case.
Right to data portability
- If you have provided your information to ELEARNING FUTURES LTD, you have the right to request and receive a copy of that information in a structured, commonly used and machine-readable format.
- You also have the right to ask us to send the information we hold about you to another organisation.
- There are some situations in which the right to data portability does not apply. For further information, please contact us.
Exercising your rights concerning the processing of your personal information
If you wish to exercise any of the above rights concerning the way in which we process your personal information, please contact:
Risk Management Team
ELEARNING FUTURES LTD,
21-22 Old Steine,
Email: [email protected]
Your right to complain to a national data protection regulator (data protection supervisory authority)
- If you think we have processed your personal information unfairly or unlawfully, or we have not complied with your rights under GDPR, you have the right to complain to a national data protection regulator.
- Complaints about how we process your personal information can be considered by the data protection regulator.