Let’s see 7 important points:
- Being on time. When you arrange a class you have to commit to it, we do not know if the student cares if you arrive a bit late and then you leave a bit late. Punctuality means “Professional teacher”.
- Knowing your materials in advance. There are so many different books and people needs for so many different purposes. Maybe that book you like so much does not suit your student level. Most of the books published is good, but it is important to know the differences among them. Some of them are based more on grammar exercises, others have more listening and speaking activities and so on. If you teach English, French, Spanish, Arabic, Portuguese, Chinese, It is also important to know which language variants your students are interested in . In particular, you should pay attention in selecting the right audio materials for them, knowing if there are, for example, some either British, American or Australian accents within.
- Once you decides which books or materials are perfect for your student, you have to know everything about it. Why? A) The student does not like having a feeling that you, his/her professor, does not know how to do some activities and exercises. It does not look good at all. Poor student. B) Because when you have often been working with the same books for many years, you can master it very well and each class preparation will be easy and easy.
Nonetheless, learning about new materials and methods is vital for our profession. Please, avoid being a “black and white” professor.
- Do not leave your paper/digital dictionary at home. Although you know, or believe that you know, the meaning of every single world and idioms, because you are the coolest professor in the planet Earth, soon or later, your student will ask you the only question you are not ready to answer in that moment. No shame in being modest…sometimes.
- Rely on your best devices. I usually have two devices switched on during my class. I talk to my student via a tablet and type via a computer to them, in order to not send that horrible typing noise to their ear. Furthermore, I can make notes about their progress, using my computer and send some extra materials to them in that moment. If you have a busy day, a tablet can also be handy, if you need to stretch your legs without stopping the class.
- Remember: even if you have your style, the priority is your student needs. Some teachers like teaching in a certain way, using the same methodology, but each student is different. Some of them need to practice more speaking, while others need to master grammar and writing.
- A good teacher is also a good student.