Start as you mean to go on was my motto for teaching live remote lessons. I wanted my students to show the behaviour I expected right from the very first lesson.
Here's how I did it:
- I shared ground rules before the first live class. I used child-friendly language and kept it positive (e.g. "I will keep my mic muted" not "I don't call out")
- I recorded a quick demo video of how to get onto the live lesson to reduce the confusion
- I sent a reminder message in the morning then 15 mins before the class and included my ground rules in the message
- When students joined the video call, I was already screen sharing a slide showing the ground rules and a fun retrieval task to do
- My first lesson had no new learning in it. The learning was how to use the technology and navigate around the various sites I was using (mainly Teams, a Microsoft forms quiz, and a couple of useful websites) we played lots of games to make sure everyone could use the chat bar and unmute.
- I looked for positives and specifically praised them (e.g. "Well done" becomes "well done for raising your hand and waiting to speak") and I used house points to reinforce these positives.
- The first time someone called out. I stopped and dealt with it in a positive, but firm way. Otherwise soon they'd all be doing it. Consistency is key.
- I over-praised and over-rewarded in the first lesson concentrating on learning behaviours. I then reduced this in subsequent classes as it wasn't needed any more.
Getting behaviour right in online classes feels different, but really it's applying the same familiar rules in a new setting. The kids have been absolutely amazing!
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Wacom verified teacher :)