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How to Make Online Teaching Work for You

By VIPKid  |  March 2, 2021

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An Interview with VIPKid Teacher Keyla 

This Teacher Profile features Keyla Morgan, a teacher who made the switch from traditional in-person teaching to online teaching with VIPKid. Teacher Keyla shares her experiences teaching English online, and what it is like to adjust to an entirely new education platform. 

Teacher Keyla has been a certified teacher for over 9 years, focusing the last 7 years teaching kindergarten and second grade in a brick and mortar classroom, until becoming a stay-at-home mom to her newborn and then transitioning to early childhood education. In August of 2020, she made the switch to teaching English online and decided to sign up with VIPKID.  

The switch to teaching English online

Since this was Teacher Keyla’s first time teaching online she was nervous about starting something new, and she found that organizing information and preparing for her lessons the day before allowed her to be a bit more comfortable. Using a pre-lesson template she would record valuable information about her students, such as their name, what slides to give rewards, the goodbye slide, what props to use, etc. allowing her to focus more on teaching the lesson. Then each morning all that was left to do was test out her connection and then get the lesson started!

Before she started, Keyla wasn’t confident she would enjoy teaching online. 

After teaching in a traditional classroom for 7 years it was difficult to picture how her in-person teaching skills would translate. After a few lessons, she found herself surprised by how quickly students were able to learn. She found that regardless of in-person or online teaching, it’s high teacher energy and deep connections with students that help children learn. She has seen some children that were very shy when they met and would only share/repeat just a few words, are now saying full sentences, eagerly trying to engage in conversation with me by grabbing things they like at home. 

“If these students have great teachers who are connecting with them consistently, and teaching with a deep love for learning and excitement to see them, students will likely make progress because they see how fun learning can be, and that they matter!” 

Keyla’s tips for keeping students engaged 

Teaching English online has its own challenges, but Teacher Keyla found that with a little preparation things can go a lot smoother.  

Be careful of off-screen distractions. Naturally, a student will sometimes engage with people or toys that are nearby, and Teacher Keyla recommends clearly letting them know that you would like their attention. It’s a simple solution, but she finds it to be successful in bringing children back into the lesson. 

Take advantage of the engaging materials. As a VIPKID teacher, you are already provided with engaging songs/videos, interactive features: drag and drop, draw a line, circle, click, write, etc. that can really keep a student’s attention. Teacher Keyla recommends relying on these engaging materials, along with the use of props, rewards, and online classroom games that the teacher can add as bonuses! 

Smiling and encouragement go a long way. Teacher Keyla recommends smiling and keeping a friendly demeanor since it keeps her students happy and much more engaged. She believes that a fun teaching environment is the best space to learn since it keeps children responsive and engaged. Make sure to allow them to feel valued and appreciated for just being themselves!

“These online connections are what push me forward, and I am loving every bit of it!”

If you’ve made the switch from in-person to online instruction with VIPKid we would love to hear your story! Share with us by reaching out on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter, and you might be the next teacher profile we feature on our site!

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