Teaching On The Go: 7 Essentials For Having A Smooth Learning Experience
VIPKID has been such a learning experience, for both my students and I, throughout the past five months. I still can’t believe that I’m making money doing what I love all while being at home and practically working even on vacation.
Being able to travel and work can be a hassle but it doesn’t need to be. Today, I’m sharing with you my 7 Essentials For Having A Smooth Learning Experience.
Aside from reliable WIFI and network connections, having a laptop, is what makes my job possible. With my laptop, I can travel and still provide an income doing what I absolutely love. I currently have a 12 inch Macbook, which is compact and light enough to make it easy to travel with.
When I first started with VIPKID, I used my Apple headphones and a cheap headset from Best Buy. After three months, I decided it was time for an upgrade and spoiled myself with the Logitech H800 Bluetooth Wireless Headset. It was a bit pricey but snatched it on sale for $59.99 on Amazon. Having a wireless headset has changed my classes drastically. Audio quality has improved tremendously, my ears are much more comfortable, and less wires!! #MOMWIN
Whiteboard and Dry Erase Markers
If there is one thing I use consistently in every single VIPKID class, it is my whiteboard. I’ve slowly collected props that I use but nothing has been more effective, in my experience, than a simple whiteboard. Using a whiteboard gives you the ability to target specific student needs like writing a sight word or introducing shapes he or she may be struggling with. If there’s time at the end of a class, I even use it for extended engagement like playing a game such as hangman. Something as simple as a whiteboard adds so much value to the student’s learning experience.
Whiteboard: Dollar Tree
EXPO Dry Erase Markers: Target
When classes begin, I always “break the ice” by using these two teaching aides that enhances their learning experience. Both the feelings wheel and the weather wheel, made of felt, are aides I use to get students to engage using complete sentences like “How are you today? I am happy/sad/angry.” and “What is the weather like today? Today is rainy. Today is sunny.”.
Felt Weather Wheel: Target Dollar Spot
Felt Feelings Wheel: Target Dollar Spot
Reward systems are key to keeping your student engaged, motivated, and simple having fun throughout the lesson. I ALWAYS keep a variety of rewards but usually stick to the same few that have been a hit with my students.
I consistently use:
Magnetic Ice Cream Rewards: Target Dollar Spot
Yellow Stars: Dollar Tree
Felt Pizza: Target Dollar Spot
I have found that students really love the star system, food, and anything that is buildable. Rewards aren’t just for fun, I also use each reward to build their oral language skills by asking them questions and having them describe their rewards using complete sentences. (How many stars do you have? What color are the stars? How many scoops of ice cream do you have? Do you like to eat pizza?)
Also, DO NOT SPEND AN INSANE AMOUNT OF MONEY! The most I’ve spent is $3 for the magnetic ice cream reward system. Keep checking your local Target and Dollar Tree for steals. Most rewards can be printed though, for free! Check out the awesome Facebook VIPKID Videos & Props group for inspiration and freebies.
Alphabet Flash Cards
Alphabet Flash Cards are such a great tool, especially for trial students! I don’t use flashcards every class but it is such a great resource to have to engage students while learning letter names and letter sounds as well as big letters and small letters, depending on the type of flashcards you have.
Portable file folder
I “TRY” to stay as organized as possible. If you’re a fellow VIPKID teacher then you know the pure chaos and mess right after you’ve finished a set of classes. Seriously, after eight straight classes every morning, my classroom is a disaster.
So how do I “TRY” to stay organized while traveling?
I use a simple file folder, where I store everything in. You can find these file folders at Target (dollar spot) and even Dollar Tree. I have so many around the house from my college days!
My teaching experience with VIPKID has been amazing. I can’t rave about it enough. I feel complete knowing that I’m still fulfilling my passion for teaching and not compromising my flexibility for my family at home.
I hope this list has been helpful for you. Teaching on the go may sound chaotic but it is possible with simple necessities.
What are your on the go teaching essentials? Drop a comment below to share your personal must haves that make your teaching so much more powerful, and fun!