Assign pre-work (e.g. readings, reading responses, problem sets, etc.) that align with learning goals. Prepare visuals that can be shared on the screen with learners.
Create a calendar invitation via Google Meet (or a link via Zoom) scheduled for class time. Disseminate link using the calendar and/or Moodle. Please see Getting Started with Google Meet for more information.
Prepare a work space with good lighting and audio.
The day of the session, allow a few minutes for everyone to join the meeting and take attendance. Be warm and inviting. At the first session make sure students can use the relevant features of the software. Ask everyone to mute their microphones unless speaking, or do so yourself if the software allows. Explain how students can engage in the lecture. For example, that they can unmute their microphone to ask questions, use the chat box or both. Consider posing an initial question to break the ice. Share the screen so that students can view the visuals.
Record the session and let students know that it will be recorded for class purposes, and that the recording will be posted on the Moodle course site, in order to allow students to have the opportunity to review content again later. Use the captioning feature in Google Meet as appropriate during the recording.
Encourage active learning. Every so often break and ask students to respond to questions or use polling options through software such as Poll Everywhere or Kahoot. Zoom also has polling capability. In longer courses, also consider giving students a break from the screen halfway through the session.
Incorporating Active, Problem-Solving
Carry out active problem solving during a remote lecture by using a device with a touchscreen such as a tablet or computer, a stylus, and a software application that has a whiteboard feature, or allows for the direct editing of a file. The screen containing the presentation file or whiteboard can then be shared with the students so that they can see what the instructor is writing. What are some software applications that we have seen Lafayette faculty use? Here are a few: Microsoft OneNote & Good Notes.
Giving examples of worked problems as well as allowing time for students to problem solve independently and share their work is recommended. If students have a smartphone or tablet they can take also an image of their solved problems and use an application to make a .pdf document that can be shared with the class by screen share, e-mailed or an uploaded to Moodle or Google Assignments.
At the beginning of a live seminar, set the ground rules for discussion. For example, there can be one speaker at a time. Invite students to speak with their microphones or through the chat function. Also, consider reinforcing any classroom guidelines created during the face-to-face course as appropriate.
Pose a compelling question. First and foremost, good discussions always start with good questions. The question is what drives the richness and rigor. Consider asking a question that has no immediate right or wrong answer, is aligned with learning goals for the course and allows for students to move up to higher order thinking. This means that the question encourages them to do things such as synthesize, analyze, critique and create.
Provide feedback. Feedback can come in many forms but creating a rubric is a great start. From word length to content, students will benefit from knowing what instructors want. Feedback can also come in the form of following up on student responses by either being a part of the live conversation or participating actively in discussion boards. Aim for formative, warm feedback. Showcase respectful and useful engagement by role modeling. For example, start off a response post by acknowledging something a student did that was compelling and then ask them follow-up questions so that they have a chance to enhance their answers.
If a learning goal during the small group time is for students to share or provide peer feedback on student writing, encourage learners to use Google Docs. Peers can add comments and suggestions for student work.
Consider posing a question to each group and allowing them to formulate a response on their own Google Doc, and then later share it with the class.