Pardon! I can’t hear you over the noise!

Pardon! I can’t hear you over the noise!
Have you ever had one of those classes where you are trying to teach, Dad is talking on the phone and Mum is holding a crying baby? I can feel a headache coming on!
We all know it’s impossible for children to make good progress in a lesson when it’s too noisy! But what can we do about it?


You can’t raise your voice to shout to make the student hear you; neither can you ask people in the child’s family to go way. If you want some ideas of how to deal with this situation, that do not include headache tablets, then click the video to start!

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Eric F
Consultant
Eric F

The noise doesn’t bother me. What does is when they rate low for their own noise. I remember once before a class I had my mic and camera off and the student made a bunch of noise and then contacted IT for their own noise.

Tabita Todea
Consultant
Tabita Todea

Yes, that is sad…

Denice Penrose
Consultant
Denice Penrose

I think there is an issue with students using tablets and smartphones for lessons, because this means they are mobile, and often in very noisy situations. I appreciate that learning anywhere is a marketing point, but actually, it’s not conducive to learning. As useful as it is for us to have strategies to handle this, I think it needs to be made clear to students that the expectation in lessons is to use a headset, which would deal with a lot of these issues.

Eric F
Consultant
Eric F

I agree. worst in my mind is when they have the class on their cell phone. There are a lot of problems that could be resolved for both the teachers and the students if the company would let the clients know what the expectations are during the class.

Tabita Todea
Consultant
Tabita Todea

Very good illustration and advice but sometimes it’s hard to keep writing that when you have 6 junior students in one class 🙁 or they are level 1 🙁 I try to mute the mics but if they are low level they keep unmuting them and that is the sad part…

Silke
Consultant
Silke

Yes, I have had the same issue too. I’m sure all of us have! Some kids can be really annoying when they do that, but apart from staying calm, there is not much we can do about it. 🙁

Tabita Todea
Consultant
Tabita Todea

That is true… Just hope and be happy 🤗

Ivana K
Consultant
Ivana K

Well said, mate! 👏😁

Diana Dimayuga
Consultant
Diana Dimayuga

Great video! Great tips ! I think we should also have a METER NOISE 🙂 🙂 🙂 LOL!

Maricel
Consultant
Maricel

Thank you. I did this once to my student using TPR. Level 1 and she talked to her mom to keep quiet. It worked!

Silke
Consultant
Silke

Aww, bless her! 🙂

Fabiana Menezes
Consultant
Fabiana Menezes

I’ll definitely follow your suggestions! Thanks for sharing.

Roxanne Picher
✨Contributor
Roxanne Picher

It’s so important to mention how there is a problem with sound in the class! Even more so when you have more than one student in your class. The other students (or parents) will appreciate that you tried to fix the problem.

Nikola Sipic
Consultant
Nikola Sipic

These are some great tips, thanks Mickey, helpful as always! ^_^
Keep them coming!

Lisa E
Consultant
Lisa E

I wasn’t able to watch the video – I tried several times, but got a Media Error message : “Format not supported or source not found”. Can others confirm whether they were able to watch, please? If you can watch it, it’s clearly my problem…Cheers!!

Arvyn
Consultant
Arvyn

I’m not able to watch it either!

Lisa E
Consultant
Lisa E

It’s working now, thank you 🙏🏻

Maricel
Consultant
Maricel

Well done Carolina. I love your soft and sweet voice.

Stephanie Murray
Consultant
Stephanie Murray

Thanks for the great tips!

Sonny T
Consultant
Sonny T

thanks for the useful video… Ive been in all these situations!! very helpful thanks…

Marva Young
Consultant
Marva Young

Thanks, great video! Nice advice.

Matthew Clarke
Consultant
Matthew Clarke

Thanks for this video, really helpful! 🙂 I find that if students introduce themselves to each other at the start of the class, led by me, they get an idea of the ‘taking it in turns’ approach and are respectful to their classmates 🙂

Joyce Gbeleyi
Consultant
Joyce Gbeleyi

Thanks Teacher Mickey! This advice will be particularly helpful for me during Presos, and tomorrow is Saturday, so great timing!

The tip about asking them for help e.g. putting on headphones is really useful. I will certainly try that, if necessary.

Cesar S
Consultant
Cesar S

Well said and agreed!

Donna K
Consultant
Donna K

Wow, had this exact issue in my 3rd day of teaching. While teaching an adult class, someone was practicing the piano. I remained calm and expressed that I was having difficulty hearing due to the music. The student then quickly fixed the issue and allowed the lesson to continue as scheduled. Thanks for your tips, Teacher Mickey.

Edgar Hernandez
Consultant
Edgar Hernandez

Great advice! Will help me because it happens often…Thank you Mike!

Sharmaine Calimlim
Consultant
Sharmaine Calimlim

Thank you for the advice! I usually mute my students when it is not their time to talk. Muting their microphones help them hear me clearly without any noise from their classmates backgrounds. I had a class one time when I got a complaint from one student about noise from their classmates. It really had a great impact on my rating and performance. But what bothered me is that my students might not have learned a lot because they didn’t hear me clearly.

Ron A
Consultant
Ron A

How do we get the recordings of our lessons?

Brad Collier
Consultant
Brad Collier

Nice suggestion for hearing your own voice! Please use a headset if you have one. I’ll definitely use that from now on. Thank you! Great video!

Vineetha
Consultant
Vineetha

Good video and good tips. Actually we can solve certain technical noises( like echo or bad head phones) by contacting IT urgently. However it’s quite hard to resolve when the client himself is in the middle of a noisy environment like restaurant/ other public places. we can use TPR about the noise for low level students or ask politely to move aside to a quite place. It will also bring a good feel about us to other clients( in a group session) if we are genuinely asking for the sake of teaching.

Silke
Consultant
Silke

Thanks for this great video, Mickey. 🙂 The most annoying thing is when you get a bad rating from a parent in 1-on-2 or 1-on-3 junior classes because another student had such a noisy background. Even though us teachers can try to turn the mic off, if the kid turns it on again (which happens often), then it is not actually our fault and completely unfair.

Lorette
Consultant
Lorette

I usually turn off their mic, but I like the tip about using TPR to ask them if they have a headset. Thank you.

Noeleen Clarke
Consultant
Noeleen Clarke

It’s always good to hear that other people have the same problems! Very helpful, thank you 🙂

Orla
Consultant
Orla

Gosh, this is really helpful. Background noise is a real pain.

Elvis Tejada
Consultant
Elvis Tejada

Great points. Let’s make sure we keep a good attitud and help the student understand the situation.

Itzel L
Consultant
Itzel L

Can bother sometimes but it is ok. 👍🏼 Thanks for the ideas.

Megan T
Consultant
Megan T

Great tips! Thanks!

Lana Murphy
Consultant
Lana Murphy

Great advice. I must say I prefer switching off the mics one by one and allowing all the students a turn to speak. However I also like the idea of asking them to use a headset. I’ve always just thought if they’re not using one, they don’t have one. Thanks for that – I will try this in future! 😀

Greta Trevino
Consultant
Greta Trevino

What I always try to do is turn off the mic where the noise is coming from. However, at times, specially younger students will keep turning the mic back on 😖. I always try to stay calm and always be patient and friendly.