If you are planning to start teaching online you might want to consider these 5 tips.
- Consider how you will make lessons interactive
Whilst organizing activities such as ice-breakers and team-building activities are easy in a school room where everyone is in the same physical space, as an online teacher, you might well be wondering how you can replicate such activities in an online environment.
The answer, in fact, is that it is actually quite easy to replicate keeping the classes interactive when teaching online and the trick is to apply what is known as ‘Breakout Rooms’. These are side rooms that you can place participants into, in small or large groups, to being able to do the actions. You can also let them use a digital whiteboard for working together and it is surprisingly easy to use these features in Zoom and other web-conferencing packages.
- Use some basic security considerations as an online teacher
There are many settings that you can normally adjust in web-conferencing platforms such as Zoom when teaching online and certainly, I would recommend to:
Set your classes online in a way that participants can only enter the school room once you are there also. So sit in a waiting room and soon you are set acim. This ensures that you have control over the class and can manage the classes in a professional manner.
Unless you should, protect the class by setting a username and password and providing each participant this username and password by email before-hand.
I recommend also disabling the ability for participants to be able to do screen-sharing until you allow them to during the class. This will assist you to avoid your lessons be hacked from outside criminals.
- Prepare 2 Days or more Before.
I constantly come across the same issue time and again when talking with trainers about their online teaching experience and the key issues they have experienced. Many new online trainers try out their equipment the same day and there is often a problem. How do you get that webcam to work correctly? Why is the microphone not working as you would expect? How do you set that username and password in a Zoom online school room?
These are things that you really must and may plan and practice and ensure you know how to do, before-hand. I always recommend doing this more than 2 days ahead of time so that you can have time, for example, to get hold of a friend to do a trial meeting online as well as to buy a new microphone if you need one.
- Make sure you have a Decent Web-Cam
There is nothing more distracting when teaching online than students struggling to see you when you are expected to the onscreen in the video. You want their attention and focus to be on the lesson itself and not to me on straining to see you onscreen or likewise, struggling to listen for you become of a poor microphone.
The cost of an HIGH-DEFINITION webcam these days is very inexpensive and easily available from major retails online. Your machine you need is very minimal in that a decent webcam and decent microphone is about all you will need, apart from access to the teleconferencing software you are planning to use.
- Realize that online learning can be more tiring
As a student online, gazing the screen can be more tiring compared to being in a school room in the same physical space. By this What i’m saying is that students will find it harder to focus for longer periods and so with online learning, make sure you provide a short break more often.
You will only need to adjust the teaching schedule slightly for online teaching, but these small changes can make it a significantly better experience for the students.