Starting any business online can seem incredibly overwhelming, but a business where you interact with people – even more so. There is a huge and diverse world of online teaching with English learners of all ages and a wide variety of backgrounds and countries. There is general English teaching and specialist teaching, so you’ll probably have to find a niche right from the start, as most students prefer to hire teachers who are specifically tailored to their needs and who can demonstrate a solid track record in this. type of teaching.
How to start
You will need a 120 hour TEFL qualification from a well known and accredited course provider; Shorter courses just won’t have the coin to get you the best jobs A good and reliable internet connection – There is nothing students hate more than a tutorial that keeps dropping and they just won’t stick with you if they have connectivity issues regularly. laptop with a high quality webcam and good audio
Some other things to think about
If you have a degree in any discipline, this should be part of your promotion. You will need a criminal background check, especially if you work with children; it is a requirement for both online teaching and in a physical classroom. Most online companies that hire teachers have established protocols, but if you work independently, you will need demonstrable evidence of your safety to satisfy parents. If not a native speaker, then evidence of English proficiency. company, to start with, some teaching organizations require a specific history of teaching children Proof of nationality
Starting a new business
Getting off the ground is one of the hardest things for any new business, not just teaching. Be realistic in your expectations. You can advertise and also bid for teaching jobs on freelance websites, but you may not initially get much interest, that’s because there are literally thousands of TEFL teachers and many have been forced to work online by the pandemic. of Covid.
The best place to start is by working for an online teaching company; they will usually search for students for you and even provide lesson plans; This is a great way to gain experience, hone and hone your techniques, build a track record for your CV, and gain a great understanding of both English teaching and online teaching in general. There is so much helpful help and advice on the internet on how to be an online teacher as the coronavirus crisis has prompted many teachers to sit behind a screen to interact and teach their students. The salary of work for a company will not be as good as the levels that you will be able to earn later, but it will nonetheless offer an excellent starting point in the industry and provide you with a valuable skill set. It is the only stepping stone you can use to get started in the industry as it is very difficult to find a job as a new teacher with no experience, especially if you don’t always have a bachelor’s degree.
Expand your experience
Getting so much varied experience when starting out is invaluable. First, you will cover ground much more quickly and feel secure and established within a few months, and second, it will really enhance your resume. Teaching in different areas and for a variety of contrasting companies will also help you better identify where you would like to specialize later.
Working for a variety of companies will show you alternative ways to do the same and help you provide experience with different learners and learners. It could also blow up some of your preconceptions! You may never have wanted to teach adults, but you actually find it surprisingly rewarding or you might have been quite against the idea of teaching young children, but you actually find that you love it and have a talent for it.
You don’t have to do all your work for the major teaching companies, jump online and search for websites like Cambly and ialki, which are full of English learners trying to improve their language skills for a variety of different reasons. Working with different types of students often holds some surprises for many new TEFL teachers, so keep your options open when starting out and be ready to try new things.
Think carefully about any specialized areas that you have from your own experience that may usefully orient you to a particular type of learner. For example, if you have had a career in business, then it might make sense to offer business English to adult learners as the main line of your teaching work. If you have a background in recruiting, then you could specialize in helping students write their English CVs, job application letters, and constructive sessions on interview technique. It’s about targeting your online TEFL business to defined markets.
Technology and promotion
Marketing yourself is a big part of teaching online success when you do it alone – people can’t hire you if they don’t know you’re there. A good website is essential, it doesn’t have to be big and complicated, but you will definitely need an online presence. Get on some of the top freelance sites like Fiverr and Upwork; you can link to your website on your profile page.
Keep your online offering specific and avoid anything generic and vague. Focus on the students you want to attract and put yourself in their shoes, really think about what they are going to look for in an online TEFL teacher.
Some successful online TEFL teachers will have a second line of income that will produce course materials that may be specific to a student age range or a particular major, or both. Learning tools can be printed and provided digitally or visually – YouTube videos are quick and easy to upload and will also act as a great advertisement for your main online teaching business.