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5 Great Ways to Make Online Lessons More Interactive

5 Great Ways to Make Online Lessons More Interactive | ITTT | TEFL Blog

Due to the way most businesses tend to operate and with the increasing rate of digitalization which has started over a decade ago, most schools are starting to catch up with the online teaching trend that private courses have grown used to.

With the ever more growing population that is both teaching and learning over the internet, there is a need for efficient, fun and interactive lessons. Where in the old-style classroom teachers could use various nonverbal tools, over the internet luckily there are a few tips and tricks to help them.

Here are some of the ways you can make your online lessons more interactive and thereby more engaging for students!

1) Don’t just speak

Most people vary in style with which they learn. According to the study done in 2014, researchers split the teaching styles into three groups:

  • auditory learners (learners who process new information best by hearing it)
  • visual learners (the majority of people: learners who prefer images, videos, graphic representations, etc.)
  • kinesthetic learners (learners who use their body and movement to learn new things)

Auditory learners learn by listening. They most easily grasp new ideas and concepts when they actually hear the information. Most often, these learners respond best to verbal lectures, frontal teaching, role-playing games and exercises, discussions, reading aloud, etc. When it comes to auditory learners, they are typically very good at following instructions even with minimal input. However, for them, written information might not do the trick as auditory input.

Visual learners, on the other hand, thrive on visual information and the easiest way for them to grasp a new concept is through seeing. They do not want group projects, discussions, or pre-recorded lectures: they actually want to see to understand.

Kinesthetic learners are a rare breed, but they exist, and they usually have problems with grasping concepts in traditional classrooms. They comprehend information and concepts by moving and touching. They are ‘doers’, not ‘talkers’ or ‘listeners’. For these students, teachers usually have to use active learning exercises. With that said, it would be useful to include engaging visuals and even some movement in teaching lessons since the classic style of teaching would cover only around 60% of learning potential.

In other words, if you want your lessons to be more interactive, you have to cover a teaching plan for all these different styles of learning.

2) Use online apps and tools

Let’s face it, teaching online wouldn’t even be possible without the internet. Thankfully, the internet brings us a huge plethora of different applications that can be used to instantly peak students’ interest and increase engagement.

Since apps and games can be stimulating, interesting and fun, teachers will be more likely to motivate the student to pay attention to the lesson. As for most professions, you are going to use computers. Using different apps prepares students to use technology and learn abilities that can be used for everyday tasks and a vast majority of job functions.

Being able to instantly share fun and engaging content also leaves enough time to additionally engage with individual students that could be struggling to keep up or maybe would like to learn more.

Below is a list of apps that you can try out and maybe add to your teaching arsenal!

  1. Nearpod
  2. Viper (Windows)3.Quizizz4.Attendance5.Extramarks6.AnswerGarden
  3. Poll Everywhere

Luckily, today there are many apps and sites available on the market, so it shouldn’t be a problem to find an ideal one for your classes.

online teacher with laptop

3) Ask for feedback

Teaching online is a skill that needs to be learned. Of course, there can be some bumps on the way to being the number one teacher, so we need to get feedback in order to improve.

By asking for feedback, we can see what parts of our teaching we need to improve. You can ask for it after the lesson, a particular subject or during a break. If you want to improve your online teaching presence, you should communicate to students that their opinions matter.

Receiving feedback that can be anonymous is a sure way to see what to change in the course to improve it. Here are some questions that can be asked:

  • Is my lesson organized and easy to understand?
  • Are the learning materials sufficient?
  • Do you feel appreciated and heard?
  • What are your suggestions to improve the classes?

Keep in mind, it’s not enough to just ask for feedback, but to carefully analyze and then apply it in future lessons.

4) Keep it short

According to a 2015 Microsoft study, our attention span shortened from 12 to 8 seconds. In order to prevent students from zoning out, breaking a lesson into smaller pieces will help you organize your content in a logical way that will be easier to follow.

Using techniques like grouping related content, breaking lectures into shorter segments and testing with knowledge questions in between will increase interaction and engagement and will keep them glued to the computer. You can also use Supreme Dissertations to polish your next lecture.

Data suggests that online students prefer taking shorter chunks of courses as it improves information retention rate and increases intellectual engagement.

5) Keep up with the trends in online learning

Raging pandemic season means a dramatic revolution in the way we think about work and the future of learning. According to the research, the following changes are already happening:

  • 56% of companies are retooling their training programs
  • 62% of businesses affected by changes due to COVID-19 are spending more on training in 2021
  • There has been a 16% increase in virtual learning (and a corresponding decrease in Instructor-Led Training)
  • Engagement in remote instruction is still one of the biggest concerns for leadership

Are you ready to teach English abroad or online?

Thanks to these changes, there is a greater need than ever for courses that are interactive, engaging and fun. Keep in mind that with the greater availability of the internet, there is a growing demand for high-quality content. Using different tips we outlined will help to compete with a shorter attention span and delivering knowledge that will stick.

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