Do Your Students Lack The Interest In Online Classes?
Every classroom has a diverse array of students. Some students brim with energy and enthusiasm, and some lack interest and attentiveness. Blame it on their introverted nature or their bad mood; it is not easy to cajole a reluctant student to contribute in class.
Words like “interest, attentiveness, participation, and enthusiasm” in the context of education are condensed into one term- “Student Engagement”. Educators from the best CBSE schools in Chennai, like Babaji Vidhayashram School, agree that student engagement is paramount. However, student engagement has taken a back seat with online classes as the current norm. Let’s explore why.
Online Classes: A Hindrance To Student Engagement?
While online education serves as an ideal alternative, it can, in no way, replace traditional classes. Digital platforms can create communication barriers between teachers and students. Besides, there are other challenges like poor internet connectivity, lack of access to technology, and privacy concerns.
Experts say that student engagement dissipates quickly if they find the class boring. Unfortunately, low student engagement has serious consequences, such as:
- Poor academic performance
- Lack of self-confidence
- Higher chances of dropping out of school
Are the students only to blame? To say yes would be unfair. Students, too, have their fair share of complaints about online classes. A survey reveals that students describe their online learning experience as:
- Not interactive enough
- Too monotonous
- Lacks passion
- Too much lecturing
- Directed “at” you instead of “to” you
- Teachers ignore students’ questions
Education is a two-way process, no matter how it is taught. You need to encourage student participation to ensure engagement, especially in an online setting. Here are some compelling ideas to ensure 100% student engagement in your online classes.
5 Ways To Ensure Student Engagement For Online Classes
#1. Guide and prepare your students
The initial struggle of implementing the online platform and learning how to use it is enough to discourage your students from actively involving themselves in class. To ease their transition from traditional to online classes, you can:
- Have an introductory session to understand how online classes work.
- Explain the technical details.
- Provide detailed videos on downloading, logging in and out of class.
- Explain the features and their functionalities
- Guide them to find study materials, class assignments, and assessments
- Show them how to communicate with fellow students via the platform
#2. Use multiple communication formats
Don’t bank only on your online learning platform to conduct classes. That itself can be monotonous. Technology has blessed us with so many communication solutions. So, be creative. Use:
- Audio and video platforms
- Chatrooms and messaging apps
- Text messaging
- Home page announcements
- Social media platforms
- PowerPoint presentations
- Whiteboard animations
#3. Be clear, concise, and organised
Understand your student’s attention span and act accordingly. You have a small window of opportunity to grab your student’s attention and keep them hooked until you conclude the session. Hence, shorter, crispier classes will work better than lengthy ones.
Organise and label your course material so that students can easily navigate the platform and find everything they need. Create a checklist for each lesson to help students track their progress.
#4. Give and collect feedback
The best way to ascertain if your online class is a success is to collect feedback from the students while ensuring you provide the same. As a part of your responsibility to provide feedback, you can:
- Respond immediately to discussion posts and emails
- Assure quick turnaround time for grading of assessments
- Correct class assignments and provide constructive feedback before assigning the next one
On the other hand, it is also critical to collect input from students to show your sincerity and seriousness about online classes. It is important to remember that your students will want to voice their opinion. Hence, it is only fair you provide them with the opportunity to do so. Use polls, surveys, and open discussions to collect feedback, and be open to accepting constructive criticism from your students.
#5. Use badges and certificates
If your Learning Management System has gamification features like badges and certificates, you should use them to acknowledge student achievements. In IGCSE syllabus schools in Chennai, like International Village School, teachers award points and badges just like they do in a normal class setting. This practice buoys the students’ competitive spirit and drives them to stay engaged and interactive during class.
The Bottom Line
We leave you with some quick tips to improve student engagement:
- Ensure you are approachable outside class. Encourage students to reach out to you to clarify doubts or get guidance.
- Assign students with homework to take action on what they’ve learned in class.
- Ensure that you have access to proper Wi-fi and a glitch-free device.
- Be well-prepared for every session. Have your notes and other supplements within reach.
It takes two to tango! You don’t have to be uber tech-savvy to deliver an engaging online lecture. Ensure you offer a distinctive online learning experience, and your students will be eagerly looking forward to your classes!