First lessons

Theyre just sweet, innocent children.

How can you teach someone
 when you can’t speak his or her language?!
At least your student can see, hear, and speak.

 * If teaching by Skype is new to you, start HERE ... but please come back to this page!


1) Smile a lot.
2) Use every visual you can think of. Hold up objects, point to them and say what they are. Point to your eyes, ears and nose ... but maybe not your toes!
3) Use your fingers to teach counting. Next use 10 apples, 10 hats, or 10 socks! Bring color into their lives. Repeat lessons using different objects.
4) Use songs to teach the alphabet, counting, days of the week, months. [See 1st Songs on left side bar.]
5) Use puppets to teach simple phrases and “have conversations”.
6) Teach words in rhyme sets to make them easier to remember: “Hello, yellow!” / “My two blue shoes.” / “Three bees see me.” [Use pictures with the phrases. Use Google to find pictures of almost anything!]
7) Use fun photos to teach more words. Be sensitive to photos showing great wealth.  Example photo (left): 
Grandfather, grandson, fish, dog.
Where’s grandmother?  (Taking the photo.)

8) There is always an element of unpredictability. There are so many factors involved in your students’ lives, in bringing together different cultures, and in using Skype itself. Stay cool and flexible, laugh a lotand be amazed at the ideas that fall into your lap as a lesson progresses
     *Example. There was a young girl who easily got bored and hated repetition. One day, in teaching the child how to say, “Hello, how are you?,” the child suddenly picked up her stuffed bear and asked the bear. She then asked the picture of the children on her notebook ... she asked her pen, her pillow, the computer mouse! It was her own initiative and the perfect answer—one the teacher never dreamed of but has used ever since.
9) First textbook:

      *There are wonderful resources on the internet but be sensitive to what you use. The child you are working with may have lost parents or have very few possessions. Your child most likely comes from a deeply moral culture —or at least a culture different from your own.