The equipment and teaching props you use to teach English online can make a whole lot of difference in the quality of your lessons.
In addition to the basics, like a computer/laptop with a webcam and a fast internet connection, there are other essential pieces of equipment and props which can make your lessons a lot more professional and enjoyable for your students.
In this post we look at what equipment you need to successfully teach English online.
Related: Best Online TEFL Course Providers
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Essential Equipment And Props To Teach English Online
Many online teaching companies these days require their teachers to have a headset with a built in microphone. VipKid, for example, lists a headset as one of their device requirements.
A decent headset will help to block out any background noise and will help you to hear your students clearly. The built in microphone in a headset will also enable your student to clearly hear your voice without any background noise, or feedback.
So, when choosing a headset to teach English online, its best to choose one which has noise-canceling earphones with a decent microphone to pick up your voice, and not the background noise.
Another important thing to consider when purchasing a headset for teaching online is the way it will connect to your laptop / computer. Some laptops, such as some Macbooks, don’t have a usb port and so require a headset with a 3.5mm jack to connect.
A great headset to teach English online is this USB Headset With 3.5mm Jack from Mpow. This headset is a noise canceling headset with an adjustable mic and both USB and 3.5mm jack connection options.
Another essential piece of equipment to teach English online is a dry erase white board.
A dry erase white board can be used for many different activities and is a great way to display important lesson information to students.
There are many types of white boards to choose from, but a magnetic white board is a great choice for online teaching. A magnetic whiteboard not only lets you write / draw on, you can also attach magnetic letters and numbers and other teaching materials like flashcards with magnets.
We particular like this Magnetic Foldable White Board as it is double sided and it can also stand on it’s own on your desk.
Flashcards are very useful when teaching English online. Flashcards can help students memorize words and help them to understand the meanings of the English vocabulary they are learning.
Flashcards can be either bought in sets, or if you have a color printer, can be easily downloaded and printed at home. You can find many FREE printable flashcards on many topics on our Flashcards Page.
Printing and cutting out flashcards can, however, be time consuming. If you would rather purchase flashcard sets for teaching English online, then check out this flashcard pack for beginner ESL learners.
If you’re teaching English to kids online, puppets and soft toys can be a great teaching aid. Using puppets and soft toys can be a great way to bring stories to life and to practice dialogues with kids in a fun way.
This set of animal puppets for kids is a great choice. This set of puppets comes in a set of 6 safari animals includes a tiger, a parrot, a giraffe, a monkey, and a zebra puppet.
Last on our list of useful equipment for teaching English online is a laptop stand.
An adjustable laptop stand can be useful when teaching English online, especially if you are planning on teaching in different locations.
A laptop stand will help you to adjust the height and angle of your laptop to help give your students a clear view of you, whether you’re standing up or sitting down.
Also, if you are planning on teaching English online for many hours a day, sitting at a computer can lead to neck stiffness and back pain if the screen is not at the perfect viewing height. An adjustable laptop stand can help you prevent this by raising the laptop to the best eye-level while you are teaching.
This ergonomic adjustable laptop stand from Jelly Comb is a great choice for online English teachers.
What Else Do You Need To Teach English Online?
Although not essential, many of the best online teaching companies will require you to have a TEFL certificate to qualify.
If you haven’t currently got a TEFL certificate and would like to know more, check out our list of the best online TEFL course providers.