Online teaching is becoming more and more common these days. Modern technology makes it possible for online teachers to pass their knowledge to students with the same level of quality as teachers in a classroom setting. Therefore, online English teachers are in high demand nowadays.
Home tutors have a wide range of online teaching opportunities to choose from. If you want to have a rest from daily commuting to work, get additional income besides your full-time job, or work after retirement, then home-based online teaching can be the right choice for you.
Let’s see which home tutor jobs are at your disposal.
Independent Online Teaching
An online teacher with vast teaching experience can work with individual students as an independent contractor or freelancer. This way, they can still use different online tutoring service platforms to advertise their skills and connect with more potential students. As an independent contractor, an English teacher online has more flexibility in setting their hourly salary, unlike in language schools, which offer fixed prices. A salary of a qualified independent online teacher may range from $25 to $50 per hour.
Online Teacher at Language School
For beginner teachers, the best option would be to apply for an English teaching position at an online learning service like VIPKID. The service sets a curriculum for you and you can work full- or part-time. An average hourly wage for online English teachers at online language schools may vary from $9 to over $20, depending on your qualifications, expertise, and which service you use.
Online Course Developer
You can develop and sell your own language courses at online educational platforms. This form of teaching isn’t as interactive as when you teach English online with Skype or another video messaging service, but you can answer the students’ questions and consult them on course-related issues. Course prices also vary depending on your qualifications, typically ranging from $10 to $100 per course.
Teaching English Online from Home: Pros and Cons
Like anything else, teaching at home has its own advantages and disadvantages, and may not suit everyone. If you cannot decide whether you want to teach languages online, we can help you by outlining the possible pros and cons.
- Saved time. You get more time both to prepare your lessons and to have a rest. No more time is spent on commuting to and from work.
- Flexibility. If you’re an independent online teacher who works with individual students, you can be more flexible when planning your schedule.
- Broad audience. You can work as an ESL teacher and teach students from all over the world without the need to move into another country.
- Technical issues. Sometimes the internet connection can be quite unstable, leading to cancelled lessons and lost money. In this case, you can ask your internet provider for another contract that offers more stable connection. Even so, being late for a class because of a traffic jam is more stressful than unstable internet connection.
- Lack of personal interaction. For example, when you teach language online to kids, you may experience limitations, as kids need more games and moving activities than adults to keep them engaged. However, some features of Skype, like animated emoticons, can compensate such lack of interaction.
See this article for examples of games and moving activities.
Still, despite some drawbacks, teaching English online has many benefits and is great for innovative teachers who would like to expand their teaching experience. Let’s take a more detailed look at how teaching English online from home typically works.
How to Teach English from Home
If we consider the standard methods for teaching kids English, then it’s important to know that teacher-centered methods are not suitable for online teaching, as online teaching requires a lot of interaction and input from the students. The best approach would be the content-centered method, where students are encouraged to speak English as much as possible to improve their skills.
What about online tools that could be used to teach languages online?
So far, Skype is the most popular tool that is used by at-home tutors. It’s free of charge and quite flexible as it offers not only offers video and audio messaging, but also screen-sharing capabilities. A nice alternative to Skype is Google Hangouts.
When it comes to exchanging learning materials, home tutors prefer to use Google Docs or Dropbox for sharing. Many materials require quite a lot of hard drive space and therefore it may take lots of time to send the files via Skype or by email. Some teachers even use social media networks such as Facebook to share the homework and answer the students’ questions.
It’s important for online teachers to not let the convenience of the process take away from their preparation. You should still be professional, prepared, and ready to teach English, even if its in a less formal environment.
As you can see, there’s a wide variety of online language teaching jobs to choose from. If you’re ready for the online teaching challenge, then choose the option that fits you best and start off with completely new and exciting teaching experience.