This is more of a head’s up than a tip

If you are thinking of teaching online, be ready to create tests quizzes, or some sort of assessment.

When I started teaching online, I didn’t see this coming.

I write six tests a week. Two Spanish tests, two French tests, a Latin test, and a German test.

I spend two to four hours a day on them.

And, I can barely keep up. People ask for more.

The harsh reality is, not everyone wants to learn what you were teaching. Don’t get me wrong, some students ARE excited about what you are teaching.

But be prepared. Some aren’t.

Some students are only in your class for the grade.  The scores. The marks.

This is just one of the sad realities of the modern bureaucratic, educational system. It’s one of the realities of ‘school.’

I often remind my students, school and education are not the same thing. School is about obedience.  Education is about learning.

You do not need school to get an education.

In fact, you will likely get a better education faster without school.

Don’t believe me?

Still, if you’re going to teach online, get ready to create tests.

Creating test is a process.  It takes a week, or two to create each test.

  • First, I research the material.
  • Second, I write the test. Physically in a notebook. I have stacks of these lying around my desk:
  • Third, I type the test.
  • Fourth, I create an answer key.
  • Fifth, I load the test in my site. I use WP Courseware.
  • Sixth, I test run and edit every test.
  • Seventh, I announce the test in the forums.
  • Eighth, I wait for students to catch my mistakes and to contact me.  I have written hundreds of tests, and will write hundreds more.  I am going to make mistakes.  It’s inevitable.   When students contact me, I have to go edit again.

Then, the process starts over.  I wish someone had warned me before I started teaching online.

So, why do I bother?  Simple.  I do it so that you do not have to create, grade and record tests.  I create the tests.  Then my site takes over.  You do not have to grade tests.  You do not have to keep track of grades.  My site will do it for you.

I hope it makes your life a little bit easier.


What I am reading these days:

Lately, I’ve been working hard to master French pronunciation.  At nearly 50 years old, I suspect this is a fool’s errand.  But, what of that?  I am going to try anyway.   At 60, I’d like to be able to say I am fluent in French.  That means I have to practice now, at age 48.

I’ve been studying languages for most of my life.  I don’t know how many language books I have read, or audio programs I have listened to.

In general, they all fall into two categories.

The academic programs focus on vocabulary lists and grammar.  With stories thrown in from time to time.

The popular “learn in your car” programs emphasize the tourist phrases.   Where is the bathroom?  Is there a bank nearby?

These days, I am listening to Learn French Like a Native.  This audio series is in the second, tourist phrase category.

I am not traveling to France (or, anywhere else) anytime soon.  I really don’t need to know how to ask questions like, “Have you seen my passport?”  But, I am listening to the series anyway.  Programs like this provide good pronunciation practice.

I found this series on Scribd.