Necessary Tools

Not only am I a private English teacher, but I’m also a new mother.  I have a limited budget and high expectations. I have created a small but effective arsenal of tools that suit all my needs. For those familiar with Food channel’s Alton Brown, his kitchen equipment philosophy is no uni-taskers.  He doesn’t own anything that can only do one thing, with the exception of a fire extinguisher. Everything must be versatile and useful. I very much follow this philosophy for teaching tools.

1 White board and markers


This is my equivalent to a teacher’s blackboard.  There is nothing I do that can’t be explained using a whiteboard.  I use it for games. I use it for exercises. I give it to my student and say you must only talk to me in English.  If you don’t know the word you can draw your idea. I show grammar on it.  I keep notes.

2 Computer with internet

Seems to go without saying.  This is all I had in the beginning.  There’s a wealth of resources on the internet and so many of them are free. Youtube is enough to create lessons to last throughout a child’s entire childhood. My two favorite :

Sesame Street

Super Simple Songs

3 Printer

I went years without a printer. It’s doable, but there are so many possibilities that open up with even a cheap black and white printer. Coloring pages, worksheets, games, books. Don’t worry about the lack of color.  I color in my own worksheets.  Has a nice homemade feel ) I’ve created and printed many games that use many sided custom dice to 3D buildings and books to create.

That’s It

I don’t subscribe to the notion that more is better. More is clutter. I have wasted hours to days of my life sifting through large amounts of material to get to the few great resources I have.  Now I spend my time teaching, not revamping worksheets or hunting a decent video, or creating an entire lesson from scratch.


I have added a few toys to my room to make my lessons a bit more fun.  Again, these are multi-taskers that I reuse in many of my lessons:

  • plastic fruit
  • wooden blocks
  • plastic shapes
  • stickers
  • piano
  • toy cars
  • stuffed animals



About ltpickens

Private English tutor for children and adults in Krasnodar, Russia.

One response to “Necessary Tools

  1. Pingback: Muzzy – Months and Seasons | Awesome Teacher

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носитель английского языка, американка, американец, американский, преподаватель, репетитор, учитель, частные уроки, занятия английским, дети, взрослые, иностранный язык, разговорный английский, бизнес английский, Краснодар, Россия, English as a second language, English as a foreign language, ESL, EFL, native English language, American, tutor, teacher, private lessons, children, adults, foreign language, conversational English, business English, Krasnodar, Russia