Since you're here, you're probably aware that I'm a pretty big geek--and that doesn't stop at German, it pours over into my hobbies: reading, (German) board games, bicycling (on my German bike), cooking (German) food, Stammtisch, foreign films...
To do what I do, you have to be enough of a geek with life to find out: find out how people learn German, find out what the best books are, figure out how to fix your client's classroom connection, even though she's 2000 miles away. And to teach German online, you have to have a website. And if you don't know how to create a website, then you have to figure it out.
Here's how I figured it out:
Once upon a time, I wasn't teaching online. I taught exclusively in-person classes and lessons. I had so many great ideas for resources for them, that I started a blog using WordPress (that’s a free software for creating websites) and each post listed another resource or fun idea for people to try.
Eventually I realized that I didn't know enough about WordPress to use it well because I already knew more about Joomla. Joomla is another website software, similar to WordPress, which is also free and open source. Open source means that the code for the software is freely available and can be modified. You may have heard that Tesla made its code open source, so if you want to build your own electric car, the software for it, like Joomla and WordPress, is free.
Wait…free?! Yes, FREE!
Over the next two years or so I re-created the website in Joomla, bought a template (which was fairly inexpensive, especially considering how awesome it looks), and went to town. I paid for the template, hosting at Siteground, my favorite hosting provider, and web designer assistance with things I couldn’t figure out myself.
How German and Joomla go so well together
The coolest part is that speaking German helped me learn how to work with Joomla.
Ja, das stimmt!