With many schools going online the Ohio State University has gone through some of their research to find some tips for students and teachers who will be using virtual classrooms.
Researchers found that developing a relationship between teachers and students is very important.
This is something we take for granted when we say hello as we enter the classroom or give each other a eye five or even direct eye contact.
Even though software like Zoom can recreate a sense of “face to face” conversation and lesson plans (and additional digital tools can enhance these meetings) it still feels a little impersonal.
What we usually consider frivolous on the internet is actually what helps us connect over the digital platform. Pictures, audio clips, emojis, videos, animated GIFs and even well placed (but dreaded) meme can help us make a more personal connection.
Students also benefit from spending time with one another away instruction and for older students group projects where the work takes place away from the “watch” of the teacher can be beneficial.