Arrival – We recommend you arrive 20 minutes early to a private class. In this 20 minutes of prep time, you need to wash your hands, find out where the class will take place (e.g. the living room, play room, basement, etc.), and set up the bubbles, music, and any other necessary props. When you arrive, ask if you should take off your shoes and make sure someone sees you wash your hands. Once you’ve been shown to the area that you’ll teach the class in do a quick review of any things that may cause distraction. For example if there’s a small bookshelf with loads of books that may be tempting for the child to grab during your session, ask if you may turn the bookshelf around for the duration of the class. Try to create a learning space that is clear of many distractions so that you can facilitate focus and fun in your session!
House Etiquette – Be mindful that you are in someone else’s home. The children may want to lead you around their house or run to other rooms because they are very comfortable in their own space. But it is important that you do not go into their bedroom, or wander around to other areas of their home. You need to be in plain view of the other adults in the house. Also, be careful not to knock over any decorations that might be on coffee tables, shelves, during the movement section of the class.
Curriculum Standards – Follow your semester curriculum, but keep in mind, you have to be more flexible with the curriculum for a private. Just remember that whatever activity you are doing with the children, you incorporate the second language and music. This may require you to improv and make up games and songs on the spot.
Classroom Management – Because the children are very comfortable in their own home, there is a higher chance of the class getting very rambunctious. You must be careful about your tone of voice and word choice in a situation where you need to redirect the class. Use positive commands such as, “Let’s stay in the living room instead of going into the bedroom,” and, “Right now, we are singing and dancing – later we can play with your other toys.” The adults and caregivers are very sensitive to how you speak to the children and even though they may not help out with the class, they are listening in.
Strong Finish – Make sure that you clean up all of the Bilingual Birdies toys and put them in the bag so that they are not confused with the other toys in the house. Leave the space exactly as you left it.