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19 January 2009

ONLINE vs CLASSROOM TEACHING

Teachers are more comfortable teaching in their own classrooms.They realise that teaching online requires a different set of skills in addition to that of teaching.A tutor that teaches a student 101,is much more open to the idea of tutoring online,but again, a different approach is necessary.
So, what does online tutoring require on your part,apart from your computer and accessories as discussed in my previous post,What Do I Need To Be An Online Tutor
A tutor needs to know her/his online platform,such as Wiziq and its features very well.a demo session can be set up beforehand and the first half an hour or the first session can be offered for FREE to the student to familiarize himself with the setup.Whether you are teaching 101,or a group of students scattered all over the globe at the same time,you need to be effective as a teacher that can hold the students attention and be able to interact with them.The teacher can give controls to a particular student or a group of students to write on the shared whiteboard,speak,etc...Students can also chat via he chatboard and ask any question and be answered in real time.Everything is viewed by all at the sametime.The teacher reserves the right as to whom she gives what control to,or deny.The only drawback is that sometimes the internet connection can be a bit slow.It is always advisable to have broadband.And a student can disappear and not pay any attention.He could go onto another website simultaneously but still be online at your virtual classroom.You have to learn to handle such students.So, in essence, you have to be quick to spot the difference in a student and deftly handle him,before he engages other students in the virtual classroom as well.You have to have all your online material such as videos,slide presentations,pictures,clipart,uploaded and ready before the session begins.It is advisable for you to be online a few minutes earlier than your student/students.Most tutoring companies give a test and train you for online tutoring before they register you for any of their classes.If you are on your own,you can invite a few students for your first session and see for yourself how it works,and then improv upon it before you spread the word and market yourself.

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