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  1. #1
    englishhobby's Avatar
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    Do we have a lesson now?

    I am doing online teaching via Skype. Sometimes my student doesn't appear in the virtual classroom, so I send him/her a message to the chat: 'Hello, (name), do we have a lesson now?' Is it correct? What are other ways to check if they are going to have a lesson now?
    If I were a native speaker of English, I would never shut up. :-)

  2. #2
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    Re: Do we have a lesson now?

    You're the teacher so I would expect you to be a little more forceful in your message. I'd put something like "Hi [name]. Our lesson was due to start five minutes ago. Where are you?"
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  3. #3
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    Re: Do we have a lesson now?

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    You're the teacher so I would expect you to be a little more forceful in your message. I'd put something like "Hi [name]. Our lesson was due to start five minutes ago. Where are you?"
    I can't write so. It may seem unusual, but I have quite a relaxed type of relationship with my students. I am an indulgent teacher (I know many people dislike this type), but somehow in the course of my work I've come to teach students who are just like me - we're just enjoying English, not learning it. My students belong to the type that would just give up the lessons if the teacher talked to them in the way you have suggested. One of them is a computer programmer and sometimes he oversleeps his lesson. I don't mind, because I need to do some work on my computer and when I have a lesson with him, it prevents me from doing my work, so I just check if we have a lesson or not. I understand, it may sound like crasy to some people, but they should be more tolerant.
    With this in mind, was my original question grammatically correct? Or, perhaps, I should write something like "Are you going to have a lesson?"
    If I were a native speaker of English, I would never shut up. :-)

  4. #4
    emsr2d2's Avatar
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    Re: Do we have a lesson now?

    If you want to be friendly/casual/informal, try "Hey! Are we still on for our lesson? "
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  5. #5
    andrewg927 is offline Senior Member
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    Re: Do we have a lesson now?

    You could say "Do we have a lesson today?"

  6. #6
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    Re: Do we have a lesson now?

    Quote Originally Posted by englishhobby View Post
    I can't write so. It may seem unusual, but I have quite a relaxed type of relationship with my students. I am an indulgent teacher (I know many people dislike this type), but somehow in the course of my work I've come to teach students who are just like me - we're just enjoying English, not learning it. My students belong to the type that would just give up the lessons if the teacher talked to them in the way you have suggested. One of them is a computer programmer and sometimes he oversleeps his lesson. I don't mind, because I need to do some work on my computer and when I have a lesson with him, it prevents me from doing my work, so I just check if we have a lesson or not. I understand, it may sound like crasy to some people, but they should be more tolerant.
    With this in mind, was my original question grammatically correct? Or, perhaps, I should write something like "Are you going to have a lesson?"


    A lot would depend on whether or not you are getting paid for your lessons.

    If it is just a casual get together then I would adopt your approach and be laid back about it saying

    " Hi John, you are not on Skype at our normal time. Are we going to have a lesson today? If yes, It had better be in the next hour or so as I have other appointments after that."

    If it was a person who paid for lessons and they were truant then I would say something like this.

    "Hi John, I logged onto Skype at our allotted time and you are not there. If you have a good excuse for this absence then we can reschedule this lesson. Otherwise, I will count this absence as a lesson for which I will be paid. If it happens again I will doubt your interest in English and terminate our agreement."

    It is a bit strong but your time is money and they have to understand that.

  7. #7
    andrewg927 is offline Senior Member
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    Re: Do we have a lesson now?

    Quote Originally Posted by englishhobby View Post
    We're just enjoying English, not learning it...One of them is a computer programmer and sometimes he oversleeps his lesson. I don't mind, because I need to do some work on my computer and when I have a lesson with him, it prevents me from doing my work, so I just check if we have a lesson or not.
    That doesn't sound like a formal, transactional relationship typical between teachers and students. Perhaps, you could just say "Do you want to practice English today?"

  8. #8
    englishhobby's Avatar
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    Re: Do we have a lesson now?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lynxear View Post
    A lot would depend on whether or not you are getting paid for your lessons.

    If it is just a casual get together then I would adopt your approach and be laid back about it saying

    " Hi John, you are not on Skype at our normal time. Are we going to have a lesson today? If yes, It had better be in the next hour or so as I have other appointments after that."
    Thank you, it's just close to what I need, though I do get paid for the lessons. It is perfect for my case without the last sentence.
    To make it more clear, for me teaching online is half-casual. I have tried the strict approach and marked the lesson the student missed as paid, but then I realised that it's very hard for me psychologically to teach the student after it, even though it was the right thing to do. The problem is in my mind and I can't do anything about it. So I decided to live according to my own views on it. To feel better I decided just to do my own work at the computer and, if the person doesn't appear, I don't get annoyed (it almost never happens that they don't appear at all, sometimes they are just a few minutes late). That's why I need the message I asked for.

    I work in an online school and because of my laid-back approach all of my students are so called "golden students" (a term used in the online school) who are staying with me for years. But I should mention the fact that I don't look at online teaching as a way to earn my living, only as a hobby. One of the reasons, perhaps, is that teachers (including online teachers) in my country get very low salaries, so I decided not to be a slave with a "conveyer belt" of students, but just to teach a couple of lessons a day, as an extra bonus to my regular payment at the university.
    If I were a native speaker of English, I would never shut up. :-)

  9. #9
    englishhobby's Avatar
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    Re: Do we have a lesson now?

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    If you want to be friendly/casual/informal, try "Hey! Are we still on for our lesson? "
    This is a very good sentence for my laid-back approach. I'll use it just for variety, thanks.
    If I were a native speaker of English, I would never shut up. :-)

  10. #10
    englishhobby's Avatar
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    Re: Do we have a lesson now?

    By the way, what about the sentence "I'm on the spot already"? Can I use it to say that I'm waiting for the student in the virtual classroom (there is a special online platform, not Skype)?
    Last edited by englishhobby; 14-Jul-2017 at 12:42.
    If I were a native speaker of English, I would never shut up. :-)

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