So you got the interview and now you’re moving on to your demo lesson! Great news! Except that you don’t know what to do! Don’t worry, everyone can ace their demo lesson and I’m going to show you how to prepare for your demo lesson!
I remember when I was first scheduled for my demo lesson. I was so nervous! To be honest I really didn’t know what I was going to do. I had a subject and some material assigned to me and a time limit. So I started preparing and I spent hours to prepare a lesson for just a few minutes!
Well, I don’t want you to feel stressed! I’m going to help you know what to expect and some tips to help you prepare!
What is a demo lesson?
A demonstration lesson or demo lesson allows your prospective employers to see you operate in a simulated classroom. You’re usually invited to do a demo lesson after successfully passing the first interview.
Demo lessons are important because often a person may have a great CV or resume and have completed a good interview but totally bomb on the demo lesson. The demo lesson, in reality, is often the most important part of the interview process because it shows your potential employer that you are really a good teacher.
Preparing for the lesson
Your potential employer will give you a subject and level of the material you need to prepare. You will also likely have some material given to you to use as the base of your lesson.
Prepare the lesson yourself
So even though you can get lessons on the internet, this is not the time to use a pre-made lesson. You can certainly use such lessons as inspiration, but you’ll want to prepare the lesson yourself. It’s really evident when you have used premade lessons from the internet.
Also try to look at the lesson you’re preparing as it’s own individual lesson, even if it’s just a few minutes. Try to include a beginning, middle, and end.
It’s not about you, focus on the student
While the demo lesson is designed to see how you would be in the classroom, it’s not actually all about you. Many teachers think that it’s mainly to see how well they can “perform” for the observers.
However, usually, the school is much more interested in the strategies and methods that you use to help your students meet the lesson goals. You want to focus on making sure that your student learns something during the lesson.
If your lesson has anything more than a three to five-minute introduction, it’s far too long. Introduce the lesson, check for understanding and then move on to the main activity of the lesson.
Also, try to keep your student an active participant in the lesson. Don’t complicate it too much and pay attention to the timing of your lesson.
- Keep it age-appropriate, especially if you’ll be teaching children.
- Stay within your allotted time.
- Keep things simple. Don’t overcomplicate it.
- Make sure it’s prepared as a stand-alone lesson.
- Have a clear lesson aim
- Don’t just observe the class, be an active monitor.
- Take note of any errors your student makes and correct them. You don’t need to harp on every error but take some time to give your student some feedback.
- Give clear and simple directions during the lesson. If necessary, break up the activity in more manageable chunks.
- In some cases, you may need some materials in order to complete your demo lesson. For example, if you are applying to teach children you’ll want to make sure you have any props and/or whiteboards necessary for the classroom.
- Make sure you have your lesson plan notes available for quick reference.
Want to see an example?
Here is an example of a demo lesson walkthrough for VIPKid. It’ll give you an idea of how a typical demo lesson looks like, especially teaching children.
If you’re interested in teaching adults, the demo lesson preparation is similar but the base material will be different. You will also not need to use props as you would with children, usually.
- Be confident! You’ll naturally be nervous but practice well, take a deep breath and try to stay calm. You can totally do this!
- Be enthusiastic! Let your passion for teaching shine! Schools are often looking for teachers who enjoy what they do, so show it!
- Smile! Your students will see that you’re friendly and will engage with you more and you’ll quickly build rapport.
If you’re just getting started teaching English online be sure to check out my FREE Teach English Online Masterclass by clicking here.
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Do you have any additional tips to prepare for demo lessons? Share them below in the comments!