A colleague of mine (high school social studies teacher) likes to invite special guests to synchronous virtual lessons, and I’m incorporating this into my teaching as well. In the past, he has invited state senators and legislators to attend his sessions, allowing students to learn from an expert and allowing the legislator to learn more about our school.
Benefits of special guests in a virtual lesson are:
I am putting a spin on having a special guest in my LiveLesson session tomorrow. I teach a gifted science course to 4th and 5th graders, and in the second semester we have a long-term science project that ends with a student presentation in a virtual session. Tomorrow’s lesson shows students what is required in the final presentation, and special guest, former student and current 6th grader, will join me to present parts of his project along with the instructions I provide. He will also be available to answer questions from the students. I hope this motivates the students and helps them realize they can do it! 🙂
Click the link above to be taken to a post written for the Virtual Learning Connections Blog based on my keynote panel points from iNACOL VSS 2011 in Indianapolis.
My students will continue their regular online studies, but I’m going to take advantage of the day and evaluate the 3rd-5th graders’ current technology skills, and what else we can incorporate into our lessons.
Using Google Forms, I created the survey below to determine what technology my 3rd-5th graders currently have access to, what they are already using, and what they’d like to do in the following areas:
I also created a message board discussion post for the students to share use of additional technology tools as project options. Students have gotten the hang of PowerPoint already in their shared writing lesson online, and I want to give them some additional options to interact with and pursue.
How can you teach math virtually, or explain a math concept from a distance? There are many ways. On Friday, a student in my Gifted Math 3 course did not understand the question below. He wrote an email message to me explaining how he thought his answer choice was correct, but didn’t understand how the second option should be correct. I quickly took a screen shot of the problem, and then used PowerPoint to draw Smart Art over the diagram to show how the correct answer makes sense.
The student was able to ask his question on his time, and receive a response from me via email message when he was ready to check again. He now has a written and visual explanation of his question to refer.
What other ways have you found you can teach math concepts at a distance, virtually, or asynchronously?
As a virtual teacher, I get to teach synchronous lessons when my students log in to my virtual classroom at scheduled times. At Capistrano Connections Academy, we use Adobe Connect called LiveLesson®. The screenshot below is from a 3rd grade Literature Study discussion session. Student names and faces were blurred or blocked out for their privacy.
In Adobe Connect, the host can move and re-size pods (the little windows you see above) in any way they desire. Layouts with pods can be saved to easily reuse the same arrangement. In this particular session, I’ve used the following pods:
Kinds of Lessons
While the picture above is from a small group literature study discussion, there are other uses for LiveLesson® sessions too. Here are some that I’ve taught:
I hope this information is useful and helpful to you. Do you have any questions or would you like to see more examples?
This is a screen shot of my first curated topic, Virtual Instruction:
You can add the “Scoop It” button to your browser menu bar, and when you are on a particular article, website, or blog page you can add it right to your curated topic page. It adds an image and description automatically, or you can add your own. You can suggest posts for the topic areas you follow too.
Some of the benefits I see to Scoop It are:
I find Scoop It very user-friendly, and a great way to store information I want to refer back to on various topics. I now have the following topics: Virtual Instruction, Transitioning Online, Common Core Coming to California, Virtual Leadership, and Public Speaking and Presentations.
Do you use Scoop It? What do you think? What other useful tools do you have for your own professional reading and information gathering/sharing?
You’ve seen pin maps used to show where you’ve traveled? Here is my map to show some of the places from where I have virtually taught.
What about you? From where have you taught virtually?