Finding the Perfect Teacher
Today I’m talking about how you can find a good online English teacher or coach. I’m first going to discuss the good qualities of an online teacher. Then I’ll talk about how you can find them. And finally, I’ll give some insight into my lessons and tell you why some excuses are not good enough!
The Qualities of a Good Teacher
1. Someone who clicks with you
It’s important to know that everyone has a different personality and you need to find a teacher who makes you feel relaxed and who you can get on with and talk to quite easily. For example, even if you like me, I may not be the best teacher for you. Find someone who has good chemistry with you.
2. Someone who is flexible
I think it’s important for a teacher to be flexible with their plans and not have a strict study plan that they insist on studying with you. Find someone who will adapt to your needs.
3. Someone who knows your struggles
Again, this is just my opinion, but I think it’s nice when the teacher is also a language learner. This helps them emphasise with the learner and understand more deeply what the student is going through.
4. Someone who you feel comfortable with
You should be comfortable to make mistakes and not worry about what you say. A good teacher should make you feel at ease in your lessons.
5. Someone who has a good memory
It’s nice when the teacher remembers what you say from lesson to lesson. It might be something simple like remembering your birthday, which is always nice! But more importantly, a good teacher should be able to remember areas of English you struggle with.
6. Someone who motivates you
Language is much more than grammar rules. I think a good teacher should also motivate you to keep learning and want to continue! This might just be a feeling you get from them, or it might be relating the lessons to culture and traditions, or even sending music and cool websites between lessons.s
7. Someone who is good with technology
This is more of a personal one for me, but I love to have a tutor who is good with using technology. Since we’re talking about online lessons here, it can be so beneficial to have a teacher who is familiar with the video software, as well as other programs that might help (such as Google Drive).
How to Find a Good Teacher
Introduction videos are not always a good representation of how a person is, but they give you a rough idea. I personally like to find people who are smiling and seem comfortable. Whiteboards are a no-no from me.
Experience doesn’t always equate to a good lesson. In fact, when I look for a tutor online, I often prefer teachers who don’t have much teaching experience because they have nothing to prove.
"I'm too shy"
You will always be shy unless you make a change. I used to be the shiest person in the class at school. But if I can change, anyone can! I recommend arranging just a 15-minute class to begin with to get comfortable with the teacher and gradually make it longer.
"It's too expensive"
I sympathise with this one! Sometime’s it’s true.
If you have the money but just are reluctant to spend it, think about your learning goals. Why do you want to learn English? English lessons are an investment and will pay you back in huge ways in the future.
If you literally don’t have the money, of course, that’s the case for many people around the world. Maybe you could consider looking for teachers who are living in cheaper countries (eg. An English teacher who moved to Thailand).
"I have no time"
This applies to everything, but I don’t agree with this excuse. What this really means is: “It’s not a priority for me”.
If you really want to improve and it is a priority, you will find a way to make the time – even if that means having less time to relax with TV or less time commuting by going by taxi or bicycle instead of walking.
"It's not necessary"
If you really don’t want to take a class, I can’t argue with that. That’s fine!
However, if you want to make improvements in your English, there’s nothing better than having practice with a professional tutor who will guide you, help you practise what you learnt, and correct your mistakes.