During a period of lock down or a circuit breaker when social distancing has to be adhered to very seriously, online teaching takes the front line for education. Many school teachers, college professors and tuition teachers who either teach at a tuition centre or conduct one on one tutoring, have to resort to online teaching methods. Teaching online is something very new for many teachers (not the case for online tuition teachers) and there are many doubts as to how this can be done in an effective and efficient manner. There was no time period to build the crescendo as pandemics happen without advanced notice! So, it is of utmost importance for students, as well as teachers to adapt and adjust.
Source: Deccan Herald
In fact, this is a great opportunity for tuition teachers and students to experiment and find out their strengths and weaknesses. Teaching online is much different from teaching in person; with the most striking difference being the way in which the teaching is primarily conducted. The former is a virtual experience and the latter is the traditional classroom setting that all of us are used to.
There are many doubts surrounding the efficacy of an online teaching session, so, here’s some tips and tricks tutors can put to use in order to conduct them successfully!
#1: YOU NEED TO BE SEEN
Some Kids tutor might feel inhibited showing their face during teaching session; however, students need to see their tutor. This visual aspect enables students to be a little more “attached” to the tuition session as opposed to just hearing the audio. It may seem like an insignificant detail but it makes a huge difference.
It may be high school students, college students or even primary school kids; it doesn’t matter because all of them require the same thing: An effective study session that is void of distractions. If the tutor’s presence is not so much felt because it’s just narrated slides for that lesson, students are bound to be distracted by their surrounding and they will likely not be focused. This leads to an ineffective lesson and students do not benefit from it at the end of the day.
#2: QUESTION & ANSWER SESSION
This does not refer to a session where students ask question; it’s the teacher calling out on students to test them on what was taught. Something like viva voice examination in medical school!
It is intimidating for the students, but this is precisely what keeps them attentive during lesson. If you announce to your students at the start of the session that there will be an “verbal test” at the end of the session with students being randomly called out, your students will most likely be highly attentive and engaged in the lesson in order to keep up with the material being covered.
This is extremely helpful for students as it ensures that they absorb the content at a fast pace and their complete attention is given.
#3: RECORD THE LECTURES
Live streamed sessions might be missed by some students due to various reasons like internet accessibility issues, so it will be beneficial for tutors to record their lectures. This way, students can watch their lectures at their own time and keep up with the material which will be highly convenient. However, high school tutors must take note of the attendance rate of students in every lesson as this leeway should not be misused by students.
Hence there must be some regulations in place which ensures that students behave with integrity. Some things that you could implement is,
- Students need to inform beforehand if they will not be able attend the session
- If there are problems with Internet accessibility, students must call and inform the problem and subsequently watch the lecture on his or her own time
- Weekly tests or quizzes to assess students’ understanding
Such rules and regulations will keep things more disciplined and this ensures that students make use of their time fruitfully.
#4: TEST OUT
Sometimes there may be issues with internet connection and there may be some problems with sharing the PowerPoint slides for a lecture; all this should be tested out beforehand. Interruptions due to technical issues will certainly be distracting and it will affect the continuity of the lesson, which will inevitably cause students to be distracted and it adversely affect the effectiveness of the session.
So, it will be great if tutors can test out their slides, video function and audio function to make sure everything goes smoothly.
Assignments and homework could potentially be good “checkpoints” for teachers to assess their students’ level of understanding on whatever that has been taught. This also means that tutors need to set realistic expectations for their students with regards to the assignments. This boils down to factors such as time limit, word count, and so on; all of which should be carefully determined by the tutor.
Tutors should not overwhelm their students with too much of work thinking that there is lots of time now that students are learning from home at their own convenience. There has to be a healthy balance!
Online teaching or online tuition session may be a new concept for many as not everyone is used to such method of teaching and learning. It will certainly take time for everyone to get used to it so the most important virtue everyone has to abide by is patience. Tutors need to be easy-going and flexible enough to try new things and adapt to the changes as they come along.
Online teaching requires teachers to be a little more tech-savvy than usual and on students’ part, responsibility and integrity is of utmost importance. It doesn’t go one-way; it’s a give-and-take essentially! Thus, in the process of adapting to this huge change, everyone is encouraged to experiment different things, assess and analyse themselves, take note strengths and weaknesses and find out what works and what doesn’t.
This will eventually be a good opportunity for self-assessment and everyone can move forward with clarity and confidence to tackle new form of challenges in future!