Three Methods In The Online Classroom
Introductory Email and Syllabus
In the beginning of a class it is very important to introduce yourself as the instructor of an online class, give the students a little bit of information about you as a person, and set the expectations for the class. I feel the introductory email is a fantastic place to begin when teaching in the online environment. An introductory email should also include the class syllabus as an attachment. The syllabus will then outline the class objectives, grading guidelines, rules for the class, and list any materials that are needed to be successful during the course. This email can be sent to the student, the parents, and the school administration.
Homepage Design and Communication
The homepage of the course tends to be the students landing page. It's the first thing they see so it should have an inviting feel and be easy to use. It is very important to make sure your homepage is clean and neat and free of clutter. Some of the things I personally like to include on my homepage are a new widget, a calendar, a voki, and a symbaloo. This is only four things, but you can get an idea of things that are coming up in the course next, see a calendar for future events, interact with a virtual teacher and have quick links to resources right at your finger tips!
Having weekly news is a great way to keep your students informed of upcoming assignments, and tests. Your news item should have a photo to give it a personal touch and make it more inviting to look at. The weekly news can become a check list for the students. This will be a great way for them to map out their week and create a list of things to do!