hello everyone and welcome if you are new to this channel I am David I'm originally from London in the UK but I'm currently in Mexico because I've been travelling full-time for the last two years sustaining myself firstly by filming travel videos on this YouTube channel but also I teach English online to intermediate to advanced adults across the world using AI talkie now many months ago I filmed a video talking about my top ten tips in terms of getting started on our talkie as a teacher and due to popular demand and many questions and comments I decided to sit down to film a short series going into some of those points that I mentioned in that video in a little bit more detail to hopefully give you a bit more information and help you get started if you would like to check out that video or indeed the playlist of videos relating to teaching English online with I talk here you can check out the link up above and it's also in the description below additionally if you would like to check out those other videos when they do get posted don't forget to subscribe you can also hit a notification bell so that whenever I upload a video in future you'll get a notification on your phone so you can watch them straight away how helpful and as you would expect these videos are of course aimed at people who are specifically looking to start working remotely or to become a digital nomad so they will be going into a lot of detail and a lot of specific detail relating to I talking itself so let's get started with the first video today we're going to be talking about scheduling and availability notice that I said scheduling not scheduling because I'm British English that is a joke by the way so the first thing you need to think about let's assume that you set up your profile as a professional teacher you've done your video introduction you've uploaded your certification certificate qualification whatever and you're ready to go you're ready to get started with your lessons the first thing you need to think about is about you so where are you in the world what is your situation in life so for example I use someone like me who is travelling full-time regularly changing time zones or are you someone that is simply working from home you know maybe you're doing my talkie part-time in the evening or during the day one of our children or a school there are numerous examples so you need to think about where you are and what your situation is because you know if you're thinking about oh I talked it would be great to do you know why my children are at school or between the hours of 9:00 to 5:00 and maybe you live in the center of the United States for example you have to think about you know where are your potential students going to be you need to think about where are the popular markets in terms of learning English which let's face it are areas like China Hong Kong Taiwan and for me very much Russia Ukraine and Belarus so have a think about time zones you know because nine o'clock in the morning in the United States is potentially going to be a time at which someone in China will not be available so you need to have a think about firstly your flexibility and when you are available to work so could it be that it might be better for you to work between 5:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. in the morning because then you potentially may capture people in Asia at the time of the day when it is their evening okay prior to traveling full time I worked in retail as a human resources manager for 18 years so their very nature of retail is that it is very much anti-social hours working at weekends working in the evening that kind of thing so I was used to that and it was no problem for me it was no adjustment but I appreciate that for many of you watching it might be an adjustment because you might be used to working 9:00 to 5:00 or 9:00 to 3:00 or whatever and adjusting to that different time timeframe in terms of working hours might be slightly difficult for you so have a think about that first of all moving on to if you're like me so if you are traveling full-time or you're a digital nomad or you're doing something else and you're doing my talking part-time have a think about time zones you know you need to be prepared to change your your working hours on a regular basis so I'm gonna give you an example from real life my life so when I started using my talky I was based in Japan for about three months and I generally taught aitana talkie between 4:00 p.m. and about midnight by doing this it meant I could capture people in Asia in the evenings when they finished work it meant I could capture people in Russia and Europe in their afternoon which particularly on weekends really word however I've been in Mexico since March 2018 it's now November and you know what this has really worked out for me because I make myself available between 7:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. doesn't necessarily mean that I work that whole time but I'm just available during those hours and what happens is generally in the morning I will capture people in China Taiwan and Hong Kong for them it's late evening I then start capturing people in Russia and Eastern Europe and then in the evening I will generally capture people in Latin America for example Brazil Colombia and Mexico so it really works out for me in terms of that but obviously everyone's situation is different and you're going to be in a different place all the time so you know for me I'm quite prepared with the fact that when I moved to a different location in the world I may need to change my working hours which could have an impact on my general work-life balance which is something we're going to come on to see ok so you've decided what kind of teacher you are in relation to your time zone and what times you're going to be teaching that kind of thing so what do you do next how do you enter those times into your itoki profile and begin getting student requests the first thing which is very important is to double-check that your time zone your own time zone is absolutely correct because if that's wrong to start off with you're gonna have big problems so go into the our Tilke website into your teacher profile and click on account settings and just double check that you've entered your time zone correctly next up you want to go into availability which is under teacher settings and you will be confronted by a calendar or Mac early to calendars so the first one is the standard weekly calendar and the second one is just called calendar but the ease of explanation we're going to call it the other calendar okay now the first calendar the standard weekly calendar is great for those of you that will be just in one location and perhaps your availability in your schedule will remain relatively static or stable over on one period so all you need to do is enter those times into the standard weekly calendar and those times will populate into the other calendar for as long as you want forever so you don't have to worry about going into it every week to change the times or whatever there is a great tool on the other calendar that we're going to talk about information to someone that is in one location and not traveling full time and that is in terms of changing your timers manually and in terms of deleting date ranges so let's say for example you're going on holiday for a week or you just need a week off or whatever or you have maybe your child's nativity play christmas is coming by the way and you need to change your availability for that one specific Friday afternoon or whatever go into the other calendar and you can select delete date range at the bottom and this will completely delete those dates in which you may be on holiday or you can specifically just go into one day and manually delete the times for for example that nativity play so it's great and easy in terms of just amending your schedule going forward now that's the simple part okay this is where it potentially gets slightly more complicated but once you get your head around it it is easy okay we're going to talk about if you're someone like me that is regularly moving around and your time zones are changing regularly the thing you have to think about is that your students when they're booking lessons will potentially book you know one to two months in advance and you know if you're moving in a couple of weeks and then moving again and then moving again you need to make sure that your time zones are correct going forward for example right now I'm in Mexico I'm leaving Mexico in a couple of weeks I'm going to be in the UK over Christmas and then gonna be on mainland Europe let's not talk about breaks it so my time zones will be changing coming up so how do I change that on talki website firstly you need to go into account settings and change your time zone to the new time zone that you're going to be in so for example in Mexico now I will change it to London and I will then go back into the calendar and I'll need to look at the other calendar okay forget the standard calendar do not touch anything with that because if you do potentially it could cause major errors with your actual accurate other calendar so go into the dates in which you will be in that new time zone and unfortunately you then have to to the times of manually for each day that you will be available if you are then moving again maybe a week later just go back into account settings repeat the same process change the time zone and go back into the calendar enter those times manually for those specific dates that you will be in that time zone once you are done with all of this okay the most important thing is to make sure that you set your time zone back so the current time zone that you're in so I've done that for the next few months for the UK for Europe and I've sent it back to Mexico because right now I'm in Mexico and students that are booking lessons for you know maybe the next couple of weeks they need to be able to book them on the correct time zone that you're on right now this is extremely over complicated but once you you know get used to doing it it does become significantly easier and finally on this video regarding scheduling and availability we're going to just talk about three other points which I'll kind of addressed earlier slightly as well so the first one is about planning ahead which I just mentioned you know you need to plan ahead at least two to three months in advance depending on your popularity on I talkie you know if you have a lot of regular students that like to book ahead you know you need to make sure that your time zones and your availability is correct going forward obviously you know you're a human you know things do happen you know you may have an emergency or you may have to make changes to your plans or maybe in a month time just be honest and open with your students look we need to maybe change the lesson time that you've booked in two months because I've got an issue an exchange okay the next point is a really important one so one I guess limitation with your talky website is in relation to when you are actually scheduling lessons for one particular day so what I used to do I used to set more availability from 7:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m. that's it but what would happen then students would just book lessons one after the other and it gets to the point where it's just impossible to keep on track in terms of time you don't get time to go to the toilet you don't get time to eat you know I'm going at so when you are scheduling lessons the thing I would advise would be to maybe book two hours of lessons then give yourself a half-hour break and then do it two hours etc yeah you know I'm talking about so I think you have a bit of time not only to go to the toilet and have something to wait and have a cigarette have a bit of a rest a breather you get a bit of time as well – maybe complete lesson feedback or prepare for the next lesson you know the worst thing that I've had is where I've had maybe eight lessons in a row and it's just absolutely impossible and not only does it stress you out but it also affects the quality of lessons that you can give in terms of you know I'm late for this lesson or I need to finish this lesson two minutes early you know you just it's just unnecessary you know just give yourself a break between lessons unfortunately the the smallest amount of time that you can give yourself in terms of a break is thirty minutes there is no facility to give yourself a five-minute break or a 10-minute break between lessons unfortunately and the last point in this video is an extremely important one and I talked about this briefly earlier and that's relating to work-life balance it's so important so one thing that you can do when you start making yourself available I talk on are talking is think oh I need to make myself available for the maximum amount of time possible but actually it's unrealistic for you to be able to do 1213 lessons a day because literally you will be dead by the end of the day you'll have no voice your ears will hear you will have a headache you know I'm getting at and so you know be realistic you know maybe five or six lessons a day like a normal workday you know in a regular job the most I've done is eleven and that was excessive to Doris with you it was doable but it was excessive it's a very long day I literally had to rest for the next day to recover so you know think about what is manageable for you so five six it might be less than that it might be more than that depending on what kind of person you are everyone is different so that's the first video in this mini series relating to teaching online with I talk II I hope you found this useful please leave a comment down below if you have found this useful tell me about your experience with I talk as well that'll be great and don't forget to stay tuned for the next a lot of videos which are coming soon the next one is about pricing I'll catch you later


  1. This is very helpful I have been doing 11 lessons per day on italki. It is kind of exhausting but I needed more experience. Also being accessible all the time drains you out a bit. So definitely the point about work-life balance resonates with me

  2. Hola hermano ayidame a entrar como tutor en italki de verdad veo esto como una oportunidad se oro ya que mi pais en lo.econรณmico esta muy mall

  3. Awesome video , very informative and made me interested enough to start the sign up process.I can't wait for the rest !

  4. Thanks David! It was very useful! I have to get back on the wagon again with my training. It's been a hectic few months with my family. I think I have to finish my TEFL training by end of year or purchase more time. Wish me luck! Thank you for the series!

  5. Really enjoyed it fella , nice to get an insight into your daily routine . Always wanted to know but donโ€™t like to ask as thatโ€™s private , good man ๐Ÿ‘

  6. Thanks, David! Extremely helpful. Can't wait for your next video. The caveat in doing an online application is the video. Well, speaking for myself. I had previously mentioned that I am of Mexican descent and like those people in Mexico. I too am camera shy! I have been so since a baby! Lol

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