Over the last year everyone has had to make major changes to the way they work. The education sector, in particular, has been effected by these pressing times. Tutors are amongst those who have been forced to find the best way to conduct successful lessons.
The first thing I considered, and tested, was which video conferencing provider was the most efficient? I tried three. The first Skype, then Zoom and finally FaceTime. Skype is very useful, you can send documents, share your screen and the connection is often good. Zoom often has a better connection (less breaking up) than Skype. I find the Zoom chat box and sharing of documents to be less proficient then Skype. Both Skype and Zoom minimise to a box when you are on other tabs.
One benefit to Skype minimised box is that when you screen shot the video box does not appear in the picture. Where as, for Zoom the minimised video stream is included. I have used FaceTime as a last resort when students have had issues. I rank the providers, for purpose of tuition, in this order. 1. Skype 2. Zoom 3. FaceTime
Then, one must consider, which interactive service provider is best. I have tried two. Bitpaper and Ziteboard. I have found that both are good, but Ziteboard is better. I really like the drag and drop feature which Ziteboard has and the pen tools are excellent. I recognise that google and other big firms provide these sort of interactive platforms but I have been completely satisfied with Ziteboard and so I haven`t used them.
So, the tools one needs to conduct online lessons are available, but what about lessons being successful? In my opinion, after practice, lessons can be very effective. Students can make outstanding progress online. Is this not the main purpose of lessons in any context?
For students to progress in understanding the online world has worked well in recent times. Surely, this movement to online will last into the future. I am sure we can see sustained progress online for students everywhere.