The Modern Virtual Classroom – How To Keep Your Students Engaged?

Srishti was hell-bent that she would be paying attention to her virtual classroom sessions today. The session begins. For the first 20 minutes, she truly pays heed to every word that the teacher spoke. But sooner she realized that she is losing interest in the topic.

Well, that might now certainly be a case of lack of concentration as there are other factors too that play a role in keeping the attention span intact for any individual.

Yes, there has been a transition to a whole new world of virtual experiences in the field of education but what remains alarming is the fact that the schools do not majorly address the need to keep the sessions engaging.

As the need for a virtual classroom environment is rising swiftly, government initiatives like Digital Education and high internet penetration are acting as a catalyst to such learning experiences. 

The Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) is also working to unify their efforts to enhance the growth curve of all the educational institutions.

Also, to cater to the education needs nationwide, the Government has come up with PRAGYATA Guidelines for digital education, to provide a roadmap to the educational institutes to further advance by creating a unified experience for them.

PRAGYATA Guidelines have been developed by thoroughly evaluating the learner’s experiences in an e-learning course. Moreover, it lays down a special focus on online/blended/digital education which is helping millions of students who are presently at home due to lockdown.

Here are a few tips from PRAGYATA Guidelines that will make your sessions worth relishing but at the same time, ensuring an informational touch.

Encourage Peer Learning

No child ever felt bored with group discussions!

If you want your students to be mindful and enjoy the virtual classroom sessions, it’s time to bestow knowledge in a fun way.

As a teacher, you can give theme-based assignments to your students which needs teamwork. The students can discuss among themselves about the Q & A sessions that would be followed after each group submissions. Moreover, a peer evaluation post such kinds of assessments can make your students ready for a competitive landscape in the future.

Also, don’t forget to ask your students about their contributions to each of the group submissions.

Not only this, encouraging your students to be a part of forums, interest groups, and online communities to interact with peers worldwide can keep your students tuned to the recent trends in the digitized education world.

You can also assist your students in having a healthy and fruitful discussion in the classrooms by asking certain questions.

An Interactive Environment

Try encouraging your students to solve doubts collaboratively. Identifying local volunteers can also be a great way to keep your student at par when it comes to performance. 

The above point would ensure that not only the students are motivated enough to be a part of the team submission but would rather progress on the learning trajectory.

When you are at home, what could be a better way to gain knowledge than to learn with your family members?

In this lockdown phase, the teachers can ask students to work on projects, portfolios that need the involvement of the family members too.

For example, the teachers can ask students to conduct interviews, create prose, poetry to improve literacy skills. To complete such things with perfection, the students would surely seek out the family member’s feedback to improvise, hence making the sessions interactive.

And what is interactive is surely engaging!

Also, there are various live interactive web streaming shows such as Mukt Vidya Vani (MVV) i.e. Open Education Radio facility which covers the subjects of Secondary, Senior Secondary, and Vocational courses in an interactive way. So, listening to such recordings would surely enhance your learning experience.

Home Based Assignments

If you feel that a theme-based assignment has been successful so far, you can give other interesting assignments to your students.

Here is a list of creative assignments that would keep your students engaged, informed, and healthy.

  • Ask children to prepare a chart/table where they can highlight all the important health practices and tick the ones that they follow.
  • You can ask your students to make a report on diabetes infected people state-wise, age-wise and the report can also include suggestive health practices to prevent it.
  • You can also ask the students to write about the experiences of Corona Warriors in your locality.
  • For junior classes, ask your students to prepare a list of people that fall under the category of Corona Warriors.

For a more generic assignment, you can follow these ideas.

  • Give interesting assignments to children such as listening, and reading stories, post which they can draw inferences.
  • Ask your students to add/change the climax at the end.
  • Give assignments that involve picture reading, art, and craft, puzzles, simple observation projects, learning new words, etc.
  • Allow flexible ways for your students to learn and grow. For example, appreciate students that come up with creative ideas such as presenting assignments using both audio and video along with other gestures.
  • Encourage your students to learn some life skills.

In the end, don’t forget to appreciate your students for all the good work they have done.

Happy Learning with family 

Pre-primary students love to enjoy with their parents the most.

So why not incentivize this opportunity by giving them a learning opportunity with their parents.

  • Teachers can set a family theme for any assignment. For example, the teachers can ask parents and students to prepare an engaging video that covers their family moments.
  • Teachers can also organize brief and casual meetings with the parents and children through video conferencing tools. This can give them a chance to narrate their feelings and experiences. 
  • Encourage the parent to document the child’s work through a photo or a short video as it will ensure that both parents and students stay connected to the child’s early learning experience 
  • Parents can also watch television programs that use animations, films, etc. and then help their child prepare notes to link the movies learning with their day-to-day life activities. 

PowerPoints

Do you know the PowerPoint slide with bullets is much more appealing than the ones that are in paragraph formats?

So, it’s important to prepare crisp slide content as this would ensure that the content has high readability. 

Then there are other PowerPoint slides creation rules that one must keep in their minds 

Slides must not have more than 5 bullet points

There should be maximum use of infographics, graphs, charts for efficient content delivery

Tables must be avoided at all times

For content creation, these things must be kept in mind 

  • Deliver content which is ‘age-appropriate’ and matches with children’s needs, abilities, and interests 
  • The content should have clear learning goals 
  • Content should be meaningfully presented 
  • The content must be contextualized and culturally responsive

Open Book Assessments

During this lockdown phase, open-book assessment can be a great way to make students enjoy the most disliked part of a student’s life “the exams”. Though the teachers can also give a personal touch to these assessments and prepare a customized questionnaire for different groups of students sharing common interests.

Even for a more general paper, the questions can be designed in such a way that students can use their personal experiences to explain important concepts.

The modern virtual classrooms that follow the above ways can surely help you be ahead of the race between technology and learning.

Though these methods are only impactful if you are using a good platform for all your virtual classroom needs.

No worries, you can always stay ahead of the curve by using “Classroom.live“.

Classroom.live is a platform that meets all the guidelines of PRAGYATA.

Moreover, the integrated platform of classroom.live is indeed a one-stop solution that offers a seamless remote learning experience as that of an offline classroom session.

It’s high time that we embrace engaging teaching curriculum for a better us and for a better tomorrow.

Be sharp, be innovative! 

That’s what the future demands.

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