Remote teaching has become popular since social restrictions introduced it to us. Educators and students are globally connected and actively reach out to experts and tutors around the globe. Similarly, remote teaching has allowed educators to explore career opportunities irrespective of location barriers.
With remote teaching becoming the new standard, some tips would help remote educators add engagement in the classroom and run a practical online class.
Here are a few strategies for remote educators that will help them add engagement in the online classes:
Engagement Is Everything
You must have read about classroom engagement multiple times, and we’ll repeat that it is indeed the core essence of a classroom. You must find ways to engage students according to the subject and grade you teach. Engaged students tend to learn more efficiently. A few ways to increase engagement include cultural references, activities, games, multimedia and other elements that can help make lessons interactive and the classroom a place where students immerse in learning. You can’t get the attention of distracted students, so it is prime to keep students engaged thoroughly. You might have to try many techniques before figuring out what works best. Work towards creating a plan that fits the needs of all students and ensure all students are engaged in classroom activities and discussions, whether you teach online or offline.
Read this post on teaching strategies to engage students that will help you understand how you can use gamification, social media, multimedia and other resources.
Alter Your Instruction, Not Your Expectations
If students are learning from home, they might face diverse circumstances. Educators must be aware and understanding of those; however, being solution-oriented and looking for ways to make their learning work will help students in continuous learning. Also, a little flex in expectation is expected, but do not let them go entirely. Make your students understand that this is important for them. A few things that can help include regular and clear communication, including conducting a friendly weekly meeting and providing clear instructions. You must also ensure that students have all the resources to support their learning aligned with their interests and comprehensive support.
Record Live Sessions
Recording your live sessions is vital because students expect flexibility and may want to revisit sessions as needed. You may want students to be present in the live classes, so consider making minimum attendance mandatory. However, you must record your live session for students who wish to view them later and students who may have skipped it and allot separate time slots for Q and A. Consider adding timestamps to the video to mark important content and questions.
The virtual environment has deprived students of the classroom’s social, collaborative and peer aspects. You must connect students and make way for collaborative education. Peer learning is underrated and underutilized. A few ways to facilitate peer collaboration are assigning group projects, conducting debates and discussions in teams, peer assessment, and other ways requiring students to communicate with each other.
Redefine Classroom Management
Classroom management is way different online than in a conventional classroom. Just like engaging students can be challenging in a virtual environment, managing students is a more significant challenge. This is because student behaviour changes in an online environment, and addressing that changed behaviour requires you to reinforce what you reward and ignore differently. Also, another aspect of managing behaviour is that you will have to be extra cautious about HOW you address the behaviour because it’s in front of the entire classroom, quite literally and sometimes with many students on board.
Be Resource Ready
Online resources can often create issues in accessibility. Consider filing resources for offline accessibility and ensure students have easy accessibility to the resources. Also, various resources would help engage students as per their interest and choice, including various multimedia like videos, presentations, pdfs, documents, reading material, podcasts and more, so that students can pick as per their choice and learn without any hindrance.
Reflect On Sessions
Students must engage in their learning materials, and you can ensure that by having students respond to what they have learnt. You can either seek their responses in writing or voice notes. The reactions can be open-ended, or you can provide prompts to ensure engagement. Another great way is to engage students in peer teaching. Students often come up with examples that are relatable to other students. This will help students interact with each other and enhance their learning experience. Reflections provide feedback on the teaching structure and might help you understand students’ expectations.
Empower Students Through Autonomy And Engagement
Students’ voices and choices in what and how they learn can alter the learning experience for good. Consider their take and say on this and make it a part of your teaching journey. Allow them to demonstrate their learning through the expression of their choice. You can also consider flipped learning to include their say in how they wish to proceed.
Authority over education empowers students. Asynchronous and self-directed learning ensures that students learn independently because they want to – a great way to enable students as a remote teaching tip. In pursuit of empowering students, a strategy that would work here is BDA: Before, During, and After. This will help you think carefully about what you want students to do before, during, and after online sessions.
Keep Motivating Your Students
Distractions and temptations make it difficult for students to remain on track as they learn virtually. Educators can push them to do better and motivate them to stay focused. You can set small achievable goals for students individually and in the class. Involve students as you outline these goals and understand their potential and possibilities so they can deliver on to your expectations and meet goals on time. Convey these to their guardians, as they are the ones who will be helping them offline.
Recognizing success motivates students and allows them to do more and better. Share individual success with the class or consider creating badges and e-certificates of achievements. You can also implement a point system; at the end of a term, the students with the maximum points get recognition for their efforts.
With technology becoming essential in classrooms, remote teaching is one of the primary benefits that is here to stay and flourish. The above tips can help educators and students make the most of an online class.