• Samantha Fecich

Virtual Teaching Tips

Friends, we are entering uncharted waters during the fall of 2020. The spring gave insight into virtual teaching, but many are still trying to navigate the waters. Remember that you are not alone! We are all learning new ways of managing the classroom as we meet new guidelines and have new procedures in place. Virtual teaching has brought a whole new meaning to being an educator.

Many educators will have some, many, or all learners online at the start of the school year. The following tips brought to you by Hannah Sansom, Katy Gibson, and myself are simply that: tips. As I said, we are all navigating these waters and are learning how to nail it as a virtual teacher.

Synchronous Learning Tips
  • Get to know your students before classes begin:

  • send a postcard

  • create a flipgrid grid

  • have small group zoom meetings

  • Send out a student interest survey via Google Forms.

  • Reach out to students with a short greeting on the learning management system (LMS).

  • Set up a discussion board (Padlet for example) for students to respond to ask questions.

  • Set up classroom norms for the online space. But don’t go overboard! 

  • Greet students as they enter the meeting by name. 

  • Have an activity for them to respond to as they enter the online space maybe it’s a question, drawing, or poll. Think of this as a digital 5-minute warm-up as students enter your classroom.

  • Always review what you talked about during the last session. 

  • Let students know where they can find handouts and notes to support them during the lesson. 

  • If you have class discussion questions, consider sending them out in the beginning of the chat so students have time to think about their answer. 

  • As students enter the class allow them to have their mics and video on so they can greet one another just as they would in a face to face class. Encourage conversation and dialogue between students and you. 

  • End with a reminder about any assignments that are due and when.  

Asynchronous Learning Tips
  • Get to know your students before classes begin:

  • Send a postcard

  • Create a flipgrid grid

  • Host small group zoom meetings

  • Send out a student interest survey via Google Forms.

  • Reach out to students with a short greeting on the learning management system (LMS).

  • Set up a discussion board (Padlet for example) for students to respond to ask questions.

  • Set up classroom norms for the online space. But don’t go overboard! 

  • Have a consistent layout and makeup of lessons on your LMS. For example, each lesson may have a warm-up, lesson, practice, and exit slip.

  • Post clear expectations and/or checklist that is expected to be completed by a given date and time.

  • Make sure students and families are aware of how and when they may get in touch with you.  Some districts have provided teachers with a temporary cell phone while others are able to transfer their school numbers to personal phones.  Whatever the case may be, make sure parents have correct contact information.

  • Check-in on a regular basis with learners and provide feedback on progress.  Ask students how you can help and any areas that you can further explain content.

Want to get even more tips for this fall? Click here to receive your copy of the FREE copy of EduMagic Uncharted.

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