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Getting timings right for live lessons

Posted: Thu 29. Apr 2021, 08:56
by HellyDouglas
I've always struggled with lesson timings. After 16 years you'd think I'd be perfect at it!

When you're teaching online, it's easy to miss the clues that your students are zoning out (no yawns, distracted behaviour, doodling, or glazed eyes!)
I found I naturally talked for much longer than the students could focus for.

I started keeping a clock in front of me to help me keep track. I broke blocks of teacher talk down into smaller chunks and interspersed them with questioning and quick activities. As a rule of thumb, I tried to talk for a maximum number of minutes as the age of my children (so 12 minutes for my class of 12 year olds - but even this felt long for them)

I also found it useful to add a timer for independent tasks. Otherwise it was easy for me to forget how long they had left.

Finally, I got more realistic about how much they could achieve in the lesson in the time available. I reduced the content, kept a fast pace, and increased retrieval practice activities.