Now, many in-person courses are moving to a virtual classroom, and teaching in a virtual classroom is very different from teaching in a traditional classroom. Being an online teacher in a virtual classroom you have certain responsibilities. Like in traditional classrooms you need to form a bond with your students and develop a sense of community. Virtual classrooms give you the advantage of communicating on a real-time basis with your students and you as an instructor need to make the best use of it.
In this article, we have written down a few tips for you to teach effectively in a virtual classroom
- Do not let technology get in the way
You need to provide your students with the best possible learning experience and in a virtual classroom, you are reliant on the technology to do so. Therefore you need to check the online platform in and out and be comfortable with it before you go live. You can do a few test runs before your class to make sure everything is right. You can also go about and use the features of the platform like the digital whiteboard, screen share, video recording, etc so that you can comfortably use them during your live session.
- Preparing your workspace
You need to prepare your workspace before you start a session. This is an important aspect that many people tend to neglect. You need to be seated in a position where your face can be seen clearly. Do no place yourself in such a manner that the light source is behind you and all your students can see will be your silhouette. The other thing is your camera. You need to position your camera such that it is slightly above your eye level. This will help you maintain eye contact with your students.
- Cameras ON, Mic OFF
You need to be clear and set norms with your students regarding the camera and mic setting. Students have to keep their cameras on so that it can create a sense of community among the batchmates. Also, it is best if they keep their mics off and switch it on only if they have a query. This will avoid disturbances from their end and you will be able to concentrate on teaching them.
- Students engagement
You need to keep your students engaged in a virtual classroom as unlike a traditional class the students can be distracted easily in a virtual classroom. You can provide an enriched learning experience for your students by incorporating visual elements into your session. This does not only mean presentations, but you can also use videos, infographics, etc. You can also provide personalized feedback when they submit assignments. This will give them a feeling that they are being monitored and heard and will encourage them to work harder. Also, you need to be aware that students will be able to see you and you can use your body language to explain things like in a traditional classroom.
- Building a sense of community
You can spend some time before or after your session for your students to ask questions if they have any or you can also use that time to get to know the students better in order to build a sense of community among the students and they don’t feel isolated.
Teaching online is a wonderful opportunity and with the right amount of planning and preparation, it can help you in reaching out to a large audience.