The following interview is part of an interview series in which we feature education professionals from a variety of different fields in order to highlight individual efforts and creative solutions to education in the 21st century. If you want to participate simply write down and send your answers to the five below questions to info {at} learnoutlive.com and include a picture of yourself. (Please note that we reserve the right to not publish all submissions)

1teacher-diane. Who are you and what do you do in education?

My name is Diane, and I am the Founder of teacherdiane.com, a website providing personalized English lessons on Skype, grammar games, and an English language blog.

After a few years spent teaching English, I launched my website in January of 2013, with the almost idealistic dream of being able to travel the world and teach English online. I am fortunate to say that my dream has come true.

In my first year alone, I helped over forty students improve their English, and I have developed enough lesson plans to last an average teacher a lifetime.

As I approach my five-year anniversary of teaching English, I am proud to say that I have taught students from over 25 different countries. Although at times my eyes may be blurry, and my nighttime dreams full of English grammar, it has all been worth it.

Teacherdiane.com offers personalized English lessons on Skype and an Intermediate Skype Course. Based on my knowledge and experience, I have developed a method of learning English that I truly believe in– a method of easily explaining grammar concepts and offering students an opportunity to practice each grammar topic in a practical way, with writing, listening and speaking opportunities.

2. Describe a typical workday in your life!

Since launching my business, I have taken full advantage of my location independence. The past couple of years I have spent living in different locations throughout the world. I’ve spent some time in South America, I am currently in Asia, and I am planning to head to Europe in a few months.

One of the best parts of my job is that no day is typical for me. Most of the day is spent working, but the time when I’m not working is spent exploring my local surroundings or doing something active.

One day I am an English teacher, another day I’m an editor, a SEO marketer, a web developer, a video animator, or a guest blogger.

There are some routines that I do follow, though. I typically wake up early and check my email while eating breakfast. I respond to any student inquiries, and update my Facebook page, Twitter feed, and every few days, my English blog.

3. In what way has technology in general and the net in particular changed your work?

Technology and the Internet have changed my work in a huge way. One hundred percent of my work is done with the aid of a computer. From creating English video tutorials to lesson planning, blogging and most importantly giving students English lessons on Skype. I am a very visual teacher, and initially I was hesitant to try giving lessons on Skype, but during my lessons, I use my tablet along with screen sharing technology to make students really feel like they are in a classroom.

Twenty years ago if someone had told me that my future job would involve speaking with people from all over the world each day, but from the comfort of my own home, I would have told them that they were crazy.

4. What challenges do you see for education in the future?

Over the past few years, so many new possibilities for learning have emerged, from free online courses, to educational video games and interactive activities with iPads integrated into classroom learning. Access to so much information is at our fingertips (assuming that you have access to a computer and Internet).

But will these new resources be as effective as a good old traditional classroom education? Will these new resources be able to keep up with the increasingly shortened attention spans of learners? Some researchers say that a typical student’s attention span is about 7-10 minutes long. How can a student find motivation to learn in a world with so many distractions?

I can only hope that the information and resources we have available are used effectively in the future. And that we can find new ways to make learning fun!

5. Where can we find you online?

Website: teacherdiane.com
Blog: teacherdiane.com/blog
Facebook: teacherdianeESL
Twitter: teacherdianeESL
YouTube: teacherdianeESL

Diane Gantenhammer: I am fortunate to say that my dream has come true.

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