Online Learning February 20, 2023

How to Create an Engaging Online Learning Environment?

Writen by EditorialTeam

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How to Create an Engaging Online Learning Environment

For many learners, learning is ineffective when they merely listen to a lesson or take notes. Today, education is about combining different sensory and multimedia experiences for students of all ages. So, interactive learning environments that encourage collaboration, discussion, choice, and participation are far more effective than traditional setups. As a result, students learn six times faster in an online learning environment than with other learning techniques.

Moreover, this kind of learning offers improved learning outcomes, enhanced emotional connections, accessibility, and greater student involvement in the learning process. But, to create such engaging online learning environments, teachers face many challenges. To overcome these challenges, here’s how to create an interactive online learning environment for students. 

Engaging Online Learning Environment

There are endless tips and tricks to help you enhance engagement in online classrooms. So let’s dive right in!

Present Your Best Online Self

If learners can see you through a webcam, ensure that you look presentable, as well as the location, you are teaching in. A pro tip is to use a simple background as it eliminates distractions. 

And this is just the beginning!

If students can see your face, it is a hundred times more motivating for them if you look interested and engaged in what they are saying (even if it sometimes demands your saintly instructor’s patience!). Likewise, the visual props you use must be up a scratch. 

Ensure that your slides look clear and clean, and any videos you use to supplement your lectures must be of good quality.

Also, try changing your voice tone to mix up the tempo and introduce new activities into your classroom. 

Offer praise out loud for your students and practice your storytelling skills. It can make a huge difference and encourage your students to stay motivated. In addition, ensure that the audio clips you use are of good quality. 

Likewise, ensure you have a stable internet connection because nothing is more discouraging than a crackly connection that keeps cutting out.

Utilize Technology

Teaching online presents many challenges, but it also puts a lot of excellent tools at your fingertips. You can use technology to add variety to your lessons and keep learners on their toes. For example, use virtual games, pointers, drawing tools, text editors, file editors, screen-sharing tools, whiteboards, or breakout rooms to make learning fun. 

Utilize Technology

Most importantly, ensure you know how to use these tools and explain them to learners so they feel comfortable using them. Then, think of ways to liven up your lessons. For instance, use fun rewards to engage students.

Inspire Your Students

Just like in any traditional in-person classroom, the key to getting your online learners involved in the learning process is to find out what inspires them and keeps them hooked to be engaged in the classroom. 

Inspire Your Students

Whether you are teaching English or a classroom instructor turned virtual, utilize the same mediums as you would in real-life classrooms. 

Turn up the funk in your classroom by playing music or going to town with a drawing tool. 

Don’t shy away from trying different things with your students until you find out what works best for them.

Set Learning Goals & Help Students Achieve Them

Another way to assist students in staying on track with online learning is by giving them a sense of purpose, setting goals, and reminding them of their progress.

Setting Learning Goals for Online Learners 

One way to set achievable goals for your online students is to make sure each lecture has a clear outline so your students know where they are in the learning process and the context of any activity they are performing. 

Setting Learning Goals for Online Learners

Think of ways you might reward students who complete tasks (or work hard) during a lesson. For example, you can try badges, points, positive feedback, playing games, or other fun activities that your students might enjoy.

When setting long-term goals, going too far might be ineffective. However, try taking time now and then to check in with your learners and set goals in collaboration with them for a month, three months, or six months.

Track Progress

During in-person classes, teachers usually give students some quiet time to reflect, work alone, and read a text.

Track Progress

However, they cannot replicate these activities in online classrooms. Reading long, dense texts on a screen is challenging, but it gets easier when you break things into chunks. 

Silence during online sessions provides a perfect excuse for learners’ attention to drift elsewhere. Therefore, design your lessons so that students actively keep typing, clicking, or talking throughout the class. 

You can keep them engaged by asking many questions, including games, and ensuring students have to physically do things such as using drawing tools or typing in the dialogue windows. Try to plan lessons, so your students have to say something every three minutes or so.

Use Chunking To Make Lessons Digestible

Timing is critical in online lessons. Teachers might need to break up lessons differently than they would in face-to-face classes. 

Use Chunking To Make Lessons Digestible

Typically, it’s best to keep a fast pace and break down knowledge into smaller, digestible chunks. Practically, it means to steer clear of lengthy explanations and PowerPoint slides with too much information. 

Value Your Students

Students experience isolation and anxiety during online classes, which can demotivate them. 

They might feel that no one cares about them, and if they miss a class, it will not make any difference. Moreover, they might find it tempting to avoid logging into online sessions if they feel tired. 

Value Your Students

Teachers can make students feel valued by learning each student’s name, using it throughout the lessons, and making sure they know yours. 

Besides, follow up on what they learned in previous lessons, keeping your students on their toes. You can also make them feel seen and heard by asking about their interests and incorporating them into lessons wherever possible. Additionally, aim to be encouraging, positive, and present, and give regular feedback to your students.

Be Patient with Learners

We all know keeping students engaged and intrigued is difficult. As young kids have very low attention spans, it is hard to sit and concentrate at times. But it is totally normal and okay. Hence, it is essential that you give them breaks every now and then.

Be Patient with Learners

Kids easily pick up when you are frustrated and annoyed, so try to be patient with them. Provide them with short breaks during lessons, so they stay focused and learn while they are online in a classroom.

Final Thoughts!

Teaching online requires creativity. Online classroom environments can be challenging to master, but with time, patience, and effort, your learners will get the best experience possible. In addition, if you create an engaging learning environment, they will be excited to log into your classroom.

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