In this post, I have shared “7 Tips For Teachers To Make Virtual Learning Successful”.
While most kids have returned to class, virtual instruction is here to stay as a part of education across the country, and teachers from all over the country have expert advice on how to make the most of it.
TNS (The New York Times) – One of the most essential lessons learned from the epidemic is that virtual learning is here to stay, but it still has a long way to go.
And teachers, principals, and district executives should be hard at work figuring out how to improve remote learning, especially if they’re still offering it after the majority of students have returned to school.
The one-room schoolhouse, which existed across the country more than a century and a half ago, is where Beth Lockhart gets her inspiration for good virtual teaching.
Lockhart, who teaches virtual classes for the Lenoir City school district in Tennessee, said, “I am my own one-room virtual school.”
Her technique incorporates many of the skills she’s refined through years of traditional teaching, as well as some new twists, such as figuring out how to make her students feel like they’re part of a classroom community, even if they’re sitting in their bedrooms on computers.
“Good virtual teaching,” according to Lockhart, who teaches a variety of subjects to pupils in grades K-6, “lies where good teaching rests, which is it has to have engagement.”
During the height of the pandemic, remote learning became a lifeline for K-12 schools, despite the fact that it was implemented rapidly, inequitably, and in many cases without academic rigour.
According to an EdWeek Research Center survey of 888 teachers, principals, and district officials conducted in late January and early February, most districts are making online learning an option for students, despite the fact that most districts are returning to giving classes mostly in person.
Here are 7 Tips For Teachers To Make Virtual Learning Successful:
2. Make students feel welcome and connected immediately
Because students aren’t sharing a physical location, making them feel connected to you and each other is even more vital in an online context. Educators believe that a sense of community should begin at a young age.
In the Vail school system in Arizona, for example, when students enroll in online classes, their professors automatically send out welcome letters introducing themselves.
A photo or video may be included by certain teachers. Students are required to respond to those communications right away in order to start building a relationship.
Educators say that once school starts, virtual classrooms should be locations where children feel welcome and want to hang out.
Manville suggests playing music at the beginning of class or asking students what they’ve been viewing on Netflix or other streaming services recently. This facilitates the commencement of normal conversations.
Students may take on duties such as attendance taker, plant waterer, door holder, and designated pencil sharpener in a physical classroom. That can also happen in a virtual class, according to Manville.
She appoints one student as the chat-box monitor, who flags any queries their classmate type in; another as the timekeeper, who ensures the class keeps on schedule; and a third as the “linker,” who gathers pertinent links and posts them in the chatbox.
4. Integrate active, hands-on learning into virtual environments
Students should keep in mind that they can show their work to the camera. Kids in virtual courses should obtain a whiteboard and a pen, according to the Vail school system. They can then display their answers for teachers to see.
Teachers are also encouraged to utilise engagement tactics such as asking pupils to offer a thumbs up or down sign with their hands, or to use a computer emoji to demonstrate whether they understand something.
They also employ technology in the classroom to poll students on their responses to specific questions. The teacher is able to see who got the answers correct or incorrect, but the students are unable to do so.
“It keeps kids interested and gives us immediate feedback,” said Kelly Pinkerton, the Vail schools’ director of innovation and development.
6. Have a plan for determining when students can turn their videoconferencing cameras on and off
It’s undeniable that video platforms make it “easier for youngsters to hide,” according to Pinkerton. Virtual students can turn off their cameras, silence themselves, and even silence the entire class, leaving only a black box with their names.
Teachers may or may not be able to prevent this depending on school rules—or simply their own teaching philosophy. Because of mental health difficulties such as anxiety, some children are attending virtual courses or enrolling in digital academies, and they may feel most at ease with their cameras turned off.
So, how can teachers ensure that their students aren’t too preoccupied with Minecraft or Fortnite to pay attention in class?
“I’m not a stickler about cameras being on,” Lockhart remarked, noting that some pupils prefer to keep their faces hidden. She does, however, expect participation regardless of the circumstances. “I expect a response if I call your name like I do in class,” she explained.
She doesn’t mind if a student answers—or asks—a question in a textual chat instead of speaking it out loud. And she’ll follow up with anyone who doesn’t participate, especially if she asks them a direct question and they respond with silence.
According to Pinkerton, kids who take online courses receive a “citizenship grade” from the Vail school district. Students earn points for speaking out loud or posting comments in the chatbox during class.
They can also earn bonus points by turning on their cameras. The school system also has a function that allows just the teacher to see the children, who are unable to see each other.
This is beneficial for kids who do not want to go on camera. After class, teachers check in with any pupils who did not switch on their cameras or participate.