Some of Verbling’s top teachers have very generously provided tips on what works best for them in areas we often receive queries about. This first post contains advice on how to prepare and deliver the perfect trial lesson.
- Upon receiving the lesson confirmation message, ask the student about their estimated proficiency level, learning objectives, and previous experience learning the target language. This will help you prepare.
- You could maybe design a warm-up activity as per the student’s estimated level and goals.
- Don’t be late.
- Introduce yourself. Be friendly, but professional.
- Create rapport and get to know each other to find out if you’re a good match.
- Do not promise anything if you consider you’re not the right teacher for this student type.
- If they’re not complete beginners, ask them to introduce themselves, test the student’s proficiency level, and identify the student’s measurable learning goals. Learning the target language is not a measurable goal. Learning how to ask for a meal in a restaurant is a goal, which has sub goals of using modal verbs correctly, asking questions correctly and politely… etc.
- Praise every small effort and any correct use of the target language.
- Discuss your teaching style and show them material samples so they know what to expect from your lessons.
- Encourage them to be inquisitive and ask any questions they may have.
- Help them gain confidence by doing a short activity that’s slightly below their level. This will give them a sense of accomplishment.
- When dealing with beginners, make sure you type what you’re saying so it’s easier for them to understand. You can later turn to this for drilling or for pronunciation practice.
- Give feedback and highlight the student’s strong and weak areas in the target language.
- Make sure you set aside some time for the last three points in this section. Rushing may negatively affect student perception of teachers.
- Suggest a learning plan to achieve their measurable goals and ask for the student’s consent: “I’d suggest that we focus on/practice/expand… How does that sound? Would you agree? Would you be happy with that?”
- Explain how to book further lessons or a course with you on Verbling.
- If the student is worried about their long term availability, ask them to solely focus on their next lesson. This is a better approach to the learning process since it helps relieve the pressure of a long-lasting commitment if this is not what they’re looking for.
- Always create a learning plan to structure the student’s future lessons according to what you have discussed during the trial lesson.
- If you don’t receive any response or further lesson bookings from trial lesson students, messaging them from time to time may help bring you more business.
Our thanks go to:
Anonymous | Spanish Teacher
Marie Richards | English Teacher
Emma Segev | English Teacher
Charly | French Teacher
Denis | English Teacher
Charlotte Friend | English Teacher
Claire Demuyter | French Teacher