Tips for giving good lessons

We just wanted to pass along some basic tips for giving good lessons.
Naturally, having good teaching sessions on italki is very important for your reputation. As you teach more students and have more sessions, it becomes easier to find new students and to raise prices.

Having a good session starts BEFORE the session actually begins.

When you accept a session request,

  • add the student to your Skype right away (or whichever teaching account you will use)
  • send the student a friendly message

Before the session begins we recommend messaging the student and asking them what they need help with. 

First, Click on "Lessons" 

Then, send your student a friendly message:

After that, make sure you prepare materials for the session.

Depending on your language, there are many teaching resources that can be found on Google.
For English Teachers, we find this site particularly helpful: 

When the lesson begins, remember these simple rules:

  • Pay careful attention to the session time. We recommend using a tool like Google Calendar or Microsoft Outlook to manage your schedule. We also recommend double-checking the session times for being mornings or evenings, because students come from many different timezones. Missing a session is a serious mistake, and this type of error is easy to avoid.
  • Prepare for technical problems. International internet connections are sometimes unstable. Try to test your connection before the session. At least make sure your communication software is up-to-date and your microphone is working. Technical problems can ruin an otherwise good experience for your student.
  • If you are a professional teacher, have a structured lesson plan ready for your student. As a professional teacher, you shouldn't expect the student to know where to start. We think students appreciate having a sense of learning objectives, expectations and progress.
  • Be patient. Building a positive reputation takes time. When you start out without any session history, it is difficult to show students that you are a great teacher. In addition, every teacher will eventually run into a student that will not be satisfied. Don't give up, and keep on teaching. Over time, you'll build up a great reputation and loyal group of students
  • Send a quick message and make sure YOU start the call at the agreed-on session time.
  • Be Friendly
  • Smile
  • Have Fun
If you have further tips for teachers, please post them below!
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