TEFL TIP – 5 Ways to Increase Bookings (Online ESL)

In the world of online ESL, the phrase increase bookings is universal and becoming more and more common due to current market.

We’ve all struggling to fill our booking slots at one point or another, so I know how frustrating and de-moralizing it can be.

TEFL TIP - 5 WAYS TO INCREASE BOOKINGS (ONLINE ESL)

Here are 5 simple tips I think will help you increase bookings and stand out from the crowd, regardless of whatever platform you teach on:

How to Increase Bookings

Consistency

Parent’s LOVE fixed slots and consistent availability. It’s important to many parents that their children have some type of routine when studying. There are a lot of online ESL platforms that only allow fixed bookings for this exact reason.

Aside from a fixed schedule, it’s also super important that your teaching style is consistent. I know it’s hard to be upbeat of those days you’re not feeling great or when you haven’t had time to drink a cup of coffee, but try your best to keep it business as usual.

Adapt

All ESL platforms are different. Some prefer their teachers to focus on phonics & pronunciation, wehereas others may want high energetic teachers who focus on speaking and using props. Do your research and find out what works for your employers and adapt your learning style!

Master your Craft

There is a wealth of resources online. Watch youtube videos, read articles and practice, practice, practice. Master your craft! Learn from others and go from being good at what you do, to GREAT! If you’re teaching students in China, my top tip would be to focus on pronunciation and correcting sentence structure. Always do this is fun and positive way, and don’t forget to give lots of encouragement.

Stand out from the crowd!

The world of ESL is saturated (especially during the pandemic), so put in that extra effort to make your lessons and classroom shine! Invest in good quality props and a fun, presentable background.

Be Passionate

This is the most simple, but effective tip. Show genuine passion and care. Try to enjoy what you do and take interest in your lessons. Students and parents will be able to tell if you’re turning up just to collect a pay cheque!

These are the areas that I think teachers should work on if they want to increase their bookings and fill their teaching schedule.

What tips would you recommend to struggling online teachers?

Tefl Tips – Wrapping Paper Backgrounds

Have you ever googled ‘online teaching classrooms‘?

Wow!

The creativity, time and effort put into many of them is nothing short of inspiring. Sticker charts, prop boxes, creative backgrounds – I’d love to be a student in one of those teacher’s lessons.

I think most online teachers would agree that a good classroom can really enhance the learning experience and create a more enjoyable lesson for both the student and the teacher.

However, not all teachers have the luxury of space, money or educational resources to compete with some of the online ESL titans on google.

Don’t fear!

I’m here to help you out with a simple tip that will enable you to create the illusion of a 5 star classroom, without costing an arm and a leg!

WRAPPING PAPER

Yes, just wrapping paper. Simple.

Wrapping paper is….

  • Cheap
  • Easy to find
  • Available in millions of options
  • Portable
  • Easy to put-up & replace
  • Changeable to suit the class type, season, student
  • Simple to cut & fit

I travel a lot! As an online ESL teacher, I have found that wrapping paper is the best thing to carry because it’s light and requires hardly any space. It’s also quick and easy to pin up in airbnb’s & hotel rooms.

I also stick to a wrapping paper background when I’m in a fixed location because even a small amount, with the right placement, can give the illusion of a grand classroom with hours of effort put into it.

So, when it doubt, chuck some wrapping paper up on the wall and brighten up your lessons!

How do you normally decorate your online ESL classroom?

Popular Wrapping Paper Options on Amazon

Online Teaching Headsets

A headset is to an online teacher what flour is to a baker. A good headset is vital to ensure high quality lessons.

Here are some of the top headsets for online ESL on Amazon. Simply click on the picture and it will direct you to the right place &price!

All of the following headsets are more than suitable to teach great online classes:

On-Ear Lightweight Headset with Mic/Stereo Headphones with Microphone for PC, Laptop

This affordable headset works well on computers, cell phones and tablets. It’s simple, reliable and comes with padded ear cushions.

Logitech H340 Wired Headset

Logictech headsets are popular among online teachers. This simple but great peice of technology doesn’t need to be installed, just simply connected via USB.

Stereo Computer Headphones with Mic (2.5 m Lead)

This one might be lower quality than the others on my list, but it’s still more than suitable for online education.

Semoic Mute Function Call Center USB Headset Noise Cancelling USB Call Center Headphone with Microphone for Skype Computer

This noise cancelling headset comes with a mute button, a super long cable and the ability to turn the microphone on and off.

Corsair HS35 Stereo Gaming Headset, Custom 50 mm Neodymium Speakers, Detachable Unidirectional Microphone, Lightweight Build with PC, Xbox One, PS4, Nintendo Switch and Mobile Compatibility, Carbon

This gaming headset is suitable for PC use and had brilliant sound quality. It may be a bit ‘over-qualified’ for online ESL, but it will get the job done!

What headset do you use to teach online? Any recommendations?

I hope you’re all staying safe!