It's my first italki lesson! What should I do? / Preparing for an italki lesson

Congratulations! You're about to make some great steps in your language learning. Here's what we recommend to have the best possible experience:

Preparing for Your Lesson

1. Check your Session Time

  • Double-check that you scheduled your lesson in the correct timezone and at the correct time of day (AM/PM). If there’s a scheduling problem, you may suggest to reschedule your lesson at least 24 hours in advance if the teacher permits.
  • Check details for your upcoming lesson(s) here: http://www.italki.com/sessions
  • How do I reschedule a lesson? If you must reschedule, try to do this more than 24 hours in advance of your scheduled lesson time: http://support.italki.com/entries/21682724-How-do-I-reschedule-a-session-

2. Communication and Follow-up

  • Double-check your lesson details to see which Communication Tool you will use to hold the lesson (Skype, Facetime, Google Hangouts, QQ) and get your teacher’s account/username.
  • Add your teacher’s account for the appropriate device. Your teacher’s ID can be found in the lesson details.
  • Send a lesson message through italki to let your teacher know your background learning the language and what you’re interested in learning next. If you’re a complete beginner, that’s okay too!  Let your teacher know why you’re beginning this language.
  • Communication between you and your teacher is extremely important in case any changes need to be made in the schedule. In case of any problems, italki will reference your lesson messages as an official record to understand the situation.
  • If you have any special requests, be sure to send your teacher a message ahead of time!

 3. Preparing Yourself

Everyone has to start somewhere, and the important thing is that you’re going to be making some great progress very soon! 

If you want to brush up on some basics first, check out some of our language-learning articles (http://www.italki.com/articles) and make a notebook entry (http://www.italki.com/entry/add) so you can get some corrections before your lesson. Ultimately, your teacher is here to help you, so simply having a SMART goal and coming up with a list of questions you want to ask your teacher is the best preparation you can have for your first class.

  • Need some suggestions for setting SMART language goals?  Check out our advice here! 
  • Start a notebook or a document to record the new words and interesting things you are about to learn!
  • Make a list of the questions you would like to ask your teacher so you don’t forget.  Since everyone learns in a different way, make sure you think about what is important for YOU, but here are some examples:
    • What do you think I should focus on first in order to reach my goal?
    • Are there any books, websites, movies (etc) you would recommend for my language level?
    • What do you recommend I do outside of class to prepare for my next class?

 4. Technical Preparations

Make sure your computer or device has the appropriate software/hardware needed to complete your lesson. This includes:

  • Skype, Facetime, Google Hangouts, QQ (your Communication Tool options)
    • Be sure that your Communication Tool is correctly downloaded and installed (Skype, Facetime, Google Hangouts, QQ)
    • Make a test call using your Communication Tool to be sure it is working properly.
  • a working microphone,
  • a working video camera (optional)
  • a working internet connection.
  • any other software that you might want to have available during your lesson (optional)

Right Before and After Your Lesson

Right before your lesson

  • Be online and logged in to your Communication Tool  (Skype, Hangouts, Facetime or QQ) 10 minutes early! Having a 10-minute buffer allows for some time to fix any last-minute technical issues.  Make sure your computer or device has enough battery or is plugged in for your lesson.  You don’t want to waste your lesson time!
  • Double-check to make sure your microphone, software, and internet are all working properly.
  • Let your teacher know you are ready via italki lesson messages AND on your Communication Tool. This will ensure that your teacher knows you are ready for your lesson.

 At your scheduled Lesson Time

  • Have your lesson! Your teacher will call you via your designated Communication Tool. Have a great class!
    • If you have problems, try to reach your teacher through the Communication Tool chat AND through italki lesson messages to find a solution.  If anything prevents you from having the lesson, you will be able to report that later. 

After Your Lesson

  • Confirm your lesson
    • After having your lesson, confirm that the lesson took place.  Once you do this, we will transfer payment to your teacher.
    • http://www.italki.com/sessions - go here to find and confirm your lesson.
    • Please note: If, for some reason, you do not want to transfer payment to your teacher, then do not "confirm" the lesson.  It's best to first discuss with your teacher what to do.
    • If there are any problems, please see the other Lesson FAQs linked below for instructions on what to do next.
  • Rate your teacher and leave feedback
    • After you confirm your lesson, you will be prompted to leave feedback. Share your lesson experience! This will help other students know what your class with this teacher was really like!
  • Book your next lesson
    • If you liked your teacher, book your next lesson to keep up your language-learning habits!  Your teacher has been saved in the “Teachers” list in your profile: http://www.italki.com/contacts/teachers
    • italki students and teachers agree that it is helpful to try a few different teachers to find one that you really enjoy working with or to have different voices to learn from.  Search for other teachers here: http://www.italki.com/teachers

 Other Sesson FAQs and Helpful Information:

 Still don't see what you're looking for?

Try searching through all our FAQs or emailing support@italki.com - we'll get back to you as soon as we can!

 

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