How do you prepare to teach/facilitate your face-to-face or asynchronous online courses? What preparation strategies do you use that could also serve you well in preparing to facilitate synchronously online?
I teach ESL (the most recognized term) at a university with course outlines and defined learning outcomes that are also articulated provincially. So, when preparing for a course, I start with the learning outcomes and how students will demonstrate acquisition or mastery and start mapping out the course from there. What projects can we do that will provide practice of the skills they need to acquire? How will I assess it? What materials will I use and are they at an appropriate level? What learning activities will I create to facilitate all this learning? Our courses are all “partially online” or blended, and so I also map out what will happen in class and how I will connect it to the online portion of the class. So far, so good?
As I prep for a fully online class, I’m realizing the process is the same but I’m working on designing online activities that will create the same learning opportunities. It’s a listening and speaking class, so I will need synchronous sessions to establish trust, explain activities, and I will definitely have breakout rooms for discussions and opportunities to practice speaking skills in English…and the thinking and planning continues. I’d say the same strategies will help me to make those synchronous sessions meaningful with careful planning and preparation. Right?Lynette
Yup!... I love this reminder of good teaching - start with what we want them to know, how will they demonstrate that they know that? how can I support them to get there.. such clarity..
Excellent capstone to the first week Lynette - planning is everything! If you plan for what will happen in a synchronous session and what learning goals you would like to achieve there is a great likelihood of success. A good facilitator still has to react to things that push the session side ways but if you have a plan you can keep things on track. Ross