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Learn to Improve Quality in Organizations With Six Sigma Green Belt Training

Projects are today one of essential aspects of organizations across industry verticals. Successful management of projects is important for businesses to realize their true potential in the market. That’s why companies need individuals with right skills to ensure value to projects of different nature and complexities. They want to hire experts to bring an effective management of change and benefit from a systematic approach to handling projects of different nature. You can thus enroll in online PMP training and gain right mindset and knowledge to manage projects of any type with effortless ease.

Here are some of key skills that professionals can learn from PMP program –

1. Bring a project-based approach to businesses

Businesses need to manage their projects efficiently to add a sense of order to their systems and processes within. The task is easier said than done unless there are trained PMP professionals around as they know how to handle projects of any nature. You can follow in their footstep with online PMP training and bring a well-controlled and project-based approach to businesses. The training will prepare you to add value to organizations of all sizes across industries.

2. Set project goals

PMP professionals are hired to lead project management team and develop a complete understanding of project goals. They can devise a solid strategy in regard to achieving project goals and then committing resources in right proportions. PMP-trained professionals can evaluate the investment of time and money for projects and ensure that only profitable ones are initiated. Their presence gives businesses the advantage of spending only on projects that are worth the investment of resources.

3. Smooth progression of projects

An enrollment in online PMP training prepares professionals to learn everything about the smooth progression of projects through key phases. Trained professionals know how to run projects from conception to completion. Their responsibility also lies in having projects properly reviewed by stakeholders at crucial stages. That’s why organizations hire PMP experts to ensure timely initiation and final acceptance to their projects.

4. Define a realistic timescale and budget for projects

Project management professionals know how to bring a rigorous approach to setting a realistic target for completion of projects. The management trusts them to set a challenging yet approachable timescale and budget for completion of different projects. With online PMP training, you can also learn how to clearly define roles, duties and responsibilities for project delivery. Trained professionals can also achieve commitment to the project objective and keep everyone on the same page.

5. Manage all the risks of projects

It’s the duty of project management professionals to implement a systematic approach to manage changes so that project goals can be achieved easily. They are also responsible for minimizing all the risks linked to projects so that the value of end-products and services can be improved easily. An enrollment in online PMP training brings a great opportunity to learn the principles, tools and techniques of project management and become a change agent for the industry.

6. Become a change agent for organizations

PMP-trained professionals enjoy a big demand in the market as their presence can guarantee value to processes and systems. They can also work as a change agent for organizations by ensuring timely completion of projects and by effective management of all the risks and challenges of project. So, you can also benefit from online PMP training and shape your career in the desired manner. This is how you can be able to deliver a competitive edge to the organization you’re part of.

The author is a practiced content developer and marketer, who have experience to develop contents for a range of business domains and currently she is composing promotional content for a India based agency that deals with Online PMP training.

Article Source: https://EzineArticles.com/expert/Abhishek_Upadhayay/496564

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/10193518

Learning Requires Adaptability and Change. Are Your Students Prepared?

When students begin your class, do you inherently expect they will read the Course Syllabus and related materials, then comply as required, without any hesitation? Or could it be possible students will arrive in your class, on the first day, and find you have created a learning environment which is slightly different in some manner? Perhaps you have expectations which are different to some degree, you’ve written the syllabus differently in some manner, or your approach to teaching is more direct (or hands-on) than the previous instructors. In other words, rarely do students transition from one class to the next without having to adapt in some manner, even when school policies and processes remain the same. There are no two instructors who are alike or teach in the same manner, even when the curriculum has already been developed for them. There is always an initial adjustment period for students.

If students have taken several classes, they may be fairly used to the process of having to adapt from one class to the next. However, a common complaint among students is a lack of consistency with grading. This can occur with courses that have a standardized rubric and set of instructions, simply because there will always be a subjective element to written assignments in which the instructor must interpret the outcomes. What is frustrating for students is knowing they may have to adapt, but not being prepared for changes in a new class. You’ll find your students have developed working patterns which help them manage their time, especially if they are non-traditional, working adult students who are attempting to balance multiple priorities at the same time. The less prepared your students are to adapt to your expectations and method of teaching, the less productive they will be in your class.

Adaptability and Learning

Another aspect of adaptability for students involves the learning process. Most adult students have established ideas, a knowledge base, and beliefs about the topics they are studying. If they are to learn new ideas, ways of thinking, change beliefs, or accept new knowledge, they will need to adapt their mindset in some manner. This is the developmental process of being engaged in learning, one which an instructor can help facilitate. It is also a process with which students can struggle, especially if they do not see a reason to change how they think or what they believe. This is especially true with academic writing and critical thinking. Often it is the instructor who challenges students to change in some manner, whether in thoughts or behaviors, and this can be difficult if students are not prepared.

Now consider how much more challenging this entire process can be for online instructors. With a traditional classroom, students and the instructor meet on a specified date and time, which means the instructor is available to help address questions and concerns. However, with an online class the instructor is not always present each time students are online and in the classroom. This distance between the instructors and the students automatically creates a sense of separation and students are less likely to contact their instructor directly. I’ve found with the younger generation, those who are used to communicating via text and social media, they will rarely call me during Office Hours, no matter how many days per week I offer those hours. This loss of immediate interaction can have a negative impact on a student who is experiencing frustration as they attempt to adapt their way of thinking during the learning process, which means an online instructor must find new methods of preparing their students.

Other Important Considerations

There is an adult learning principle to consider and it is called andragogy. What this means is adult students are self-directed, they do not need to be told to learn, and they need to know why they are learning what they are learning. In other words, this is not mandatory education, such as primary education, which means they want to be present in the classroom. While they may not always be able to identify their own needs from a self-development perspective, at least you understand why they are present in your classroom. It is a matter of choice and it is linked to a specific need. This makes it even more important for you, as their instructor, to help them understand why they need to learn what they are studying, why they should consider adapting their point-of-view, and why they need to change certain developmental behaviors or thoughts.

Another consideration is the reaction you might expect when students begin adapting their beliefs or ways of thinking, or they begin to change certain behaviors, such as their academic writing skills. You should consider their working history and how long they have made a habit of these thoughts and behaviors, as expecting an overnight change will likely not be possible. It requires nurturing change over time and with a supportive attitude. If you approach it from a demanding attitude, one of compliance and done immediately, you are likely to find yourself faced with a very emotional reaction from your student. A supportive approach will result in a less defensive reaction from your student and the result will likely be a student who will try and then try again. Your continued support is needed, from one attempt and success, to the next.

4 Methods to Prepare Students for Adaptability and Change

#1. Be Supportive and Nurture Development

Your disposition, as an instructor, is the most important aspect of any student adapting to the learning process and making any type of change, whether in their ways of thinking or behaviors. In your supportive attitude, you can help prepare your students by explaining why they need to adapt or change. This sounds like a very basic and simplistic step, yet it is one which is often overlooked. For example, if you make a notation in your feedback that an introductory paragraph was too basic and needs to be written at a graduate level, but offer nothing further, what really have you done to help this student change? You can take it a step further by explaining what you mean, offer resources, offer to speak with your student, and share strategies. Always set your student up for success. Your role is not just to grade, but to help develop your students.

#2. Prepare Your Students and Build Momentum

Remember that the first attempt a student makes may be the most important. If students are voicing a new belief on the online discussion board, let it be a safe space for them to do so, provided it is done in a respectful manner. Encourage divergent thinking and encourage them to consider multiple perspective by using prompts which engage their critical thinking skills. Or when they try to improve their academic writing skills and you see an improvement, be sure to let them know you’ve observed it when you provide feedback. While it may not be perfect the first time, the initial feedback after the first time is crucial to building momentum. If students know you have their back, they will keep going in their attempts. You can even suggest midpoints to check in with them and see how they are progressing, just to let them know you are there and available to assist them. This will help them avoid the mental setbacks which are possible when working on developmental issues, and help to build their self-esteem.

#3. Developing Appreciative Feedback

Regardless of where each student is at in the development process, always show appreciation for what they have accomplished. The use of appreciation, especially in online education, is one of the most effective tools I have found over the past decade. This simple strategy of showing how much you value the work completed by your students does more to boost the morale of students than any grade or outcome they can experience. While you may always have deficits and areas of development to address, you can always find something to appreciate. The fact a student has turned in a paper and made an attempt is reason enough to show appreciation. For online instructors, appreciation goes a long way towards closing the distance gap and helping students feel their instructor is a real person. While this disposition towards students does not directly prepare them for adaptability, it creates a mindset which is less defensive and open to change.

#4. No Matter What, Explain and Explain Again

As an instructor, never take for granted your students know all school policies and processes, no matter how long they have attended the school. In addition, never assume they have studied the syllabus at length and have memorized your expectations. If something is important to you, then explain it to your students, and then explain again through other forms of reinforcement. This will prevent your students from feeling unprepared and later blindsided when they are graded, evaluated, or somehow measured against these standards or expectations, and believe they were never fairly prepared for them. This will only create feelings of resistance and ultimately derail your developmental efforts.

You Are the Key to Their Success

As an online educator for over a decade, I can tell you I am still learning myself about the best ways in which to help prepare my students for the learning process. I read the end-of-course evaluations to see if I can learn about sticking points and how I can adapt and change myself or my teaching strategies. What I never want to do is to expect something from students that I have not properly prepared them for, especially when it comes to developmental issues. Students come to the classroom and they want to learn. They often do not understand what that entails, other than to read a book, perhaps write a paper and take a test. We as educators know there is much more to the process, and to help students understand this requires time, patience, and a lot of effort on our parts. For those of us who teach online classes, our time period is usually very short when compared to traditional classes. What I try to do is to focus on helping students excel from where they are at now, and prepare them to continue to grow. Often a willingness to grow and adapt is a significant accomplishment.

What will also be of benefit is trying to help inspire them as an instructor. Showing appreciation is a step in this direction. If you can be of an even disposition with them, even when they express their emotions of frustration, you can be the steady constant they need in this developmental process. Often students who are inspired by their instructors not only adapt as they learn, they then develop goals for their lives as well. They see a future application of what they have learned and they want to do something with the knowledge they have gained. The adaptability then extends from the classroom into their lives, which is transformative for them. This is the type of educator we can all aspire to be and it starts with our disposition towards the learning process and our students. If we can see people instead of processes, and appreciate each student regardless of their strengths or struggles, we can then become someone who inspires students and prepares them to be ready to learn.

Dr. Johnson specializes in distance learning, adult education, faculty development, online teaching, career management, and career development. Dr. J has a Ph.D. in Postsecondary and Adult Education, a Certificate in Training and Performance Improvement, and a Master of Business Administration, MBA.

Dr. J’s mission is to teach, write, and inspire others. He writes blog posts, articles, and books to inform, inspire, and empower readers. To learn more about resources that are available for educators, along with career and professional development, please visit: http://www.drbruceajohnson.com/

Article Source: https://EzineArticles.com/expert/Dr._Bruce_A._Johnson/834483

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/10226918

6 Critical Best Practices for Online Teaching: Be Prepared

We live in an unprecedented time with higher education being disrupted, as traditional classes are being moved online, at least for the time being. Whether or not this will continue for any length of time remains to be seen. This has occurred at an interesting time for the field of distance learning as many of the for-profit schools have closed, and the growth of new online schools has slowed. The number of online schools growing is limited, and competition comes from traditional schools offering online classes.

With a move of traditional classes to an online platform, there is a challenge for many educators to adapt to a virtual environment. Those educators who teach in this environment already, such as myself, are already accustomed to creating a virtual presence. However, while online teaching can be rewarding for those who can adapt to it, there are many demands for instruction in this environment, and it can be quite challenging at times. Whether you are new to online teaching or have extensive experience, you will find one of the most important measurements is the end-of-course student evaluation. You will also be evaluated by completion of the required facilitator duties, which typically includes participation in class discussions and feedback for learning activities.

To help you prepare for the requirements of online teaching, there are critical best practices you can implement to ensure you are effectively and substantively engaged in your class. These are the product of my work as an online educator, along with my work in faculty development, having been reviewed by the strictest of standards and applying these standards to faculty I’ve reviewed. You can use these best practices as a checklist for the development of your own online teaching practice, regardless of how long you’ve taught online classes.

Online Instructor Essentials

How you manage your time and the weekly schedule you create will ultimately determine how successful you are as an online educator. The two tasks which are going to take the most amount of time are class discussions and feedback. If you do not allow enough time for these tasks, and you fall behind, you are going to feel rushed when trying to complete what is required of you. The ultimate result is either going to be minimal participation, minimal feedback, or both. A feeling of being rushed may also show up in your disposition as well, if you become agitated when there is not enough time to complete the required tasks or deadlines are nearing. Your students will sense this, even in an online environment, as there are subtle cues which show up in the word choices used in online posts and messages.

Something else to consider is the contract you agree to when you become a faculty member and accept a class commitment. You need to take the time to review the faculty expectations, especially if you are new to the school, to make certain you know all details about performance requirements. Should you have any questions, it is best to contact your Department Chair or supervisor. The most critical timeline requirements involve responding to learner questions, regardless of how posted or sent. You will likely receive audits and/or performance reviews, and when you do, use these tools as a means of self-development to help you to continue to learn and grow.

Making a Transition: From Traditional to Online Teaching

For those who teach in a traditional classroom and now must teach online, there will be a learning curve which will happen quickly. The first adaptation is becoming used to the technology platform or LMS, and discovering the technological tools which can enhance the learning experience. The most significant challenge for traditional educators, who are not used to teaching online, is interacting with learners who are not visibly present. The lack of visual cues can be overcome at times if a webinar is integrated into the class program. However, for most of the class, it is functioning without a live class and visual or verbal cues. Now the words posted become the primary form of communication and this makes it much more challenging to assess the intent or meaning of what is being stated, especially if a learner has challenges with academic writing.

What an online educator must eventually learn, often through time and practice, is he or she is the one who must keep the class engaged, not the course materials. If a learner is not actively participating or is not present in class, it is the instructor who must work to re-engage the learner, and do so within a timely manner, as a disengaged learner may soon become dropped from the course. This means learners are looking for, and often expecting, their instructors to be highly engaged and present in the course, and responsive to their needs. An instructor cannot log onto their class once or twice a week and hope this is sufficient. There must be ongoing and active involvement to sustain an online class, and work on the developmental of the needs of all learners.

6 Critical Best Practices for Online Teaching: Be Prepared

What follows are best practices you can implement now, regardless of the length of time you’ve taught online. If you have implemented some or all of them already, you can use it as a checklist to remind yourself of what’s important for your work as an educator.

Best Practice #1. Become the Support Your Learners Need

When learners enroll in a class, they are likely aware of their deficits already. When you begin the process of feedback and note those deficiencies, it may only serve to further confirm they are not capable of succeeding in their academic studies. This is why you must take a supportive approach to your feedback and the instructional approach used as you interact with your learners. Consider as well the fact you and your learners are separated by distance, or as I call it, the distance factor. Your learners are going to read what you post and share before you ever have an opportunity to explain it, which means everything you write needs to have a supportive tone to it. How you write, along with what you write, can and will determine the future of the learner, and the effort he or she will continue to make in your class. Find whatever way you can to be the support your learners need by taking time to read what they post and write, and acknowledge them as learners.

Best Practice #2. Develop a Mindset Which Encourages Positivity

You have likely read about nurturing a growth mindset in learners, and this can occur even in your adult learners, provided the conditions in an online class are conducive to do so. This is not just a result of a beautiful LMS or technological tools, it occurs when an instructor has a disposition and mindset which encourages positivity. This means you have become focused on your learners and you implement strategies to encourage and uplift them. In my post, Discover 5 Essential Learner-Centered Strategies For Online Instructors, I discussed my use of videos for feedback. I also use short videos to encourage learners as well, along with small posters I create to uplift them.

There will be times when you feel challenged, especially when a learner sends an email and vents their frustration in an unpleasant manner. The most effective strategy to take when you have a negative reaction is to write in a Word document, then step away for a few minutes to regain your balance. When you return, you will likely be able to focus once again and better assist the learner. When you create an environment which feels positive, from the perspective of the learner, you have managed to accomplish another important goal: You have helped humanize the learning experience. This also helps to take the distance factor out of distance learning.

Best Practice #3. Be a Leader in Academic Writing

Many educators are not hired because they are professional writers. Regardless of the academic writing skill level you possess, consider this to be an ongoing area of development. I use a Word document to develop my discussion posts, to help ensure I’ve managed the mechanics. What you want to remember is that your learners are watching what you post in discussions and write as you provide feedback. If there are numerous academic writing errors, this may send a mixed message if your feedback points out academic writing errors the learner has made. If your school offers resources within an online writing center, this may be of benefit for you and any learner who needs further development. If these resources are not immediately available for you, there are many online resources you can find. You want to lead the way with academic writing and show your learners you take it just as seriously as you enforce it when feedback is provided to them.

Best Practice #4. Become a Master of Your Course Materials

What I’ve learned over time about course preparation is the need to learn my course materials. When a course is pre-developed for you, it may seem all is needed is to join the discussions and participate, and then provide feedback based upon the written rubric. However, this is far from what is required for course preparation. Every instructor must review the course materials thoroughly and completely, just as a starting point, in order to be able to participate in class discussions in a meaningful manner and provide substantive feedback. More importantly, ongoing development means reading and finding resources related to the course topics, as the use of supplemental sources will help provide context for your discussion posts and the feedback you develop. When you become the master of your course materials, you are creating additional learning opportunities for your learners.

Best Practice #5. Be Determined to Become a Lifelong Learner

As you are interacting with your learners, and you remember why you love to teach, you are encouraging them to develop a love of learning. If you want to become even more effective in this approach, you can continue to cultivate your own determination to become a lifelong learner. While you may not be a learner now, you can find professional development opportunities of your own. Many academic institutions encourage or require educators to publish, and this presents a very good opportunity to conduct research into areas you are interested in studying. There are many affiliations you can also join and likely find webinars to attend. What I’ve done as a Modern Educator is to write online articles and blog posts, as a means of continuing my research and writing, even if I’m not publishing in an official academic capacity. It still allows me to share my knowledge and expertise, while connecting with other educators, sharing ideas, information, and strategies.

Best Practice #6. Establish a Standard of Excellence

Over time you will evaluate and refine your online instructional practice. It will be the result of what has been successful, the strategies which have not served you well, lessons you have learned (some the right way and others by mistake), and most important of all, feedback you have received from learners in many different forms. Typically the feedback I learn most from occurs within the classroom, as I try new strategies and receive replies in response. There is a high standard I have established for myself. At the beginning of my work as an educator I was very hard on myself when I made mistakes. But now with time and practice under my belt, I know both successes and mistakes have served me well. It is not possible to become a perfect online educator without having taught for some time and even then, you still must be open to learning and development as learner needs evolve. I can state with certainty the needs of learners today are different than they were 15 years ago when I first got my start. But having a standard of excellence gives me a sense of accountability to myself and makes certain I am working to the best of my abilities.

I well understand there are many inherent challenges associated with online teaching, and most are related to time and a lack of direct contact with learners. Yet I’ve found it can be a very rewarding experience because I am able to get to know my learners better than I ever could in a traditional classroom. This may sound unusual to someone who has never taught online, who sees learners face-to-face, but my perspective comes from being able to interact with each and everyone of them in a discussion, getting to know them through weekly learning activities, and engaging with them through direct communication. While I am separated from my learners, I have found tools to bridge this gap and replace the distance with a virtual presence. Now with these six critical strategies, I can further assure learners I am there to support them and their progress in a nurturing, positive, and supportive manner. If you can take this approach yourself, perhaps you and your learners will find online learning to be a viable and enjoyable form of education.

Dr. Bruce A. Johnson is an inspirational author, writer, and teacher.

Dr. Johnson’s career has involved helping others learn, including people and organizations. His roles have included Manager of Training and Development, Human Performance Improvement Consultant, Online Instructor, Career Coach, Curriculum Developer, Manager of Faculty Development, and Chief Academic Officer.

Since 2005, Dr. J has specialized in distance learning, adult education, faculty development, online teaching, career management, career development, and human performance improvement. He has a Ph.D. in Postsecondary and Adult Education, a Certificate in Training and Performance Improvement, and a Master of Business Administration, MBA. Presently Dr. J is a Core Faculty member for one of the premiere online universities.

As a scholar practitioner, Dr. J was published in a scholarly journal and he has been a featured presenter at an international distance learning conference. He has also published books, eBooks, and over 200 online articles about adult learning, higher education, distance learning, online teaching, and career development, helping to fulfill his life’s mission to teach, mentor, write, and inspire others.

To learn more about resources that are available for educators, along with career and professional development, please visit: http://www.drbruceajohnson.com/

Article Source: https://EzineArticles.com/expert/Dr._Bruce_A._Johnson/834483

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/10266407

Four Strategies Every Online Educator Needs for a Work-Life Balance

Online educators have been implementing the work-at-home model long before there was the 2020 crisis. Some referred to it as “teaching in your pajamas” – because of the nature of the job, which often meant for many, working a full-time position during the day while teaching as an adjunct during the evening hours. Those who are in a full-time position may still find themselves working during both daytime and evening hours, simply due to the needs of the learners and the requirements of classroom management. I’ve been in both roles over the past 15 years, and my ability to balance a professional and personal life has come about through time and practice.

While the roles may have a slight variation from one online school to the next, the requirements are generally the same. To be successful in this role, you must decide to allocate enough time to complete your tasks, even if it takes away time from your personal life. I say this not to demean the position in any manner, rather it is said because teaching is not a position in which you can easily clock in and out from or establish strict hours for completing daily tasks. There are certain tasks, such as feedback and class discussions, which you can estimate time commitments to some degree. However, the time needed to be engaged with learners cannot be accurately estimated. From my personal perspective, I would rather be available, highly engaged, responsible, and easily available for learners, even if this means I am taking more time than it seems I should be allocating for that particular day. In fact, I do not even think about time as a factor each day. Instead, I developed strategies to help ensure I am balancing time effectively.

What Does Your School Require?

As an adjunct, there are typically specific due dates that are contractual in nature. These due dates are related to feedback and class discussions. This can create a sense of pressure each week, trying to meet those required deadlines. What you want to be certain you are aware of is the exact nature of your contractual requirements. There may be a Faculty Handbook, a teaching contract, or other similar type of document. I recommend you review these documents, along with school policies at the start of each term, to make certain you are well aware of what your school requires. There is often an unstated rule about those adjuncts who are not meeting the requirements and an inability to continue receiving new contracts or additional course assignments. More importantly, depending upon the severity of the requirements not met, failure to meet a contractual requirement could result in termination.

Are You Taking on Too Much?

I know of many adjuncts who are teaching for multiple institutions at the same time. As a faculty development specialist, I interacted with faculty who were teaching at five or six institutions at time. I cannot imagine trying to balance that many classes, at multiple institutions, all at the same time. What would make this even more complex would be also working full-time; however, I did not ask for personal details. There is a common understanding in this industry that many part-time adjuncts earn a living this manner, by teaching at multiple institutions, and I understand why. The competition for positions now is higher than ever. This wasn’t the case when I started in 2005 as the number of positions greatly outweighed the number of available faculty. If you are teaching multiple classes for multiple schools, you must be especially careful about how you are balancing your personal and professional lives.

Then there is a completely opposite syndrome, those who intentionally take on too much and are not concerned about the quality of the tasks they complete. A couple of years ago I had a contract with a specialty online school to create their very first Faculty Development Center. Once I had it developed and launched, I began online training. As part of this project I created the first set of Faculty Standards and reviewed faculty classes. What I found was a common problem within the industry, faculty who teach to earn a paycheck. There were participation posts with comments such as “I agree” and feedback for written papers which included “Good job”. Unfortunately for the school, there were no standards previously in place, and quality control was never measured.

How to Define a Work-Life Balance

The tasks required for an online educator are not easily calculated, as to creating a time management plan. Therefore, when attempting to set up personal and professional time, it may not be easy to state which day or days to allocate for each one. There is another approach required and the following four strategies can help you adapt your unique position to find a sense of balance, which in turn will help you feel better prepared to complete your tasks, when you are required to do so. No one can function effectively at a non-stop pace. Everyone needs a break and this plan will help get you started.

Four Strategies Every Online Educator Needs for a Work-Life Balance

These strategies are meant to help you find a sense of stability with your schedule. Start with the first strategy as it provides a purpose statement for your entire plan and will create a vision to sustain the balance you are seeking.

Strategy #1: Create a Professional Practice Philosophy Statement

As an online educator, you likely have a personal philosophy statement developed already. This statement is something different. This is a statement you are going to develop for you and you alone. It is a reconciliation, so to speak, in which you decide how much time you are willing to spend on your career each week. It is not meant to be shown to anyone, which means you are not going to be judged for your answer. You decide, and you determine now, what your limits for this job will be each week. Developing this type of boundary is important for establishing a balancing statement.

Strategy #2: Create Your Schedule, One Week at a Time

Now that you have your Professional Practice Philosophy Statement, and you understand your professional time limit per week, you can create a schedule. What you will need next is a list of the contractual or required faculty duties for the week. Take the list and map it out for the week. You can allocate more time for significant tasks, such as feedback, and break down a task like that over several days. You may also need time for discussions throughout the week, along with classroom management. While this strategy may seem fairly obvious, the simple act of completing it, with a time limit having been established, can be very productive from a mindset point-of-view.

Strategy #3: Stick to the Plan, When It’s a Valid Plan

Now that you have a plan in place, you will find yourself more willing to stick to it. Now you will likely complete tasks on time as you know the deadlines established for yourself. More importantly, you understand why this plan was completed, and it was for your well-being, to ensure there is time leftover each week for your personal life. Now I would make a caution about this as well. If you decided to only allocate 10 hours, when the expectation is to spend 30 hours a week for your work as an adjunct, then a realistic plan has not been created and a disservice has been given both to the learners and your school. In addition, if there are valid reasons why you need to spend extra time on a specific day, then you should consider why that extra time would be a good investment in your career. In other words, always weigh the benefits of exceeding your daily plan when there is a legitimate reason.

Strategy #4: Learn to Unplug When It’s Time

This is perhaps one of the most challenging strategies for anyone who is an online educator, learning to unplug from technology. Even if you turn off the computer or laptop, it may still be possible to access the classroom and/or email from a mobile device, such as a phone. But at the end of a work day, you need your downtime. You have got to allow yourself some time to rest and recharge, for the sake of your well-being and mental health. This is also true for the personal time you’ve designated in your time plan. I cannot state I have always allowed full days off in my weekly plan; however, I at least allow blocks of time to stop and enjoy time with my family. Perhaps I’ll take my spouse to a movie, or take my family out to eat. The point is I understand why I’m working, based upon my own Professional Practice Philosophy Statement, and I know when I need to unplug. You need to do this as well, so you can come back to the computer or laptop refreshed.

This is an Art, Not a Science

Learning how to balance your daily and weekly tasks is an art, more than it is an exact science, and it will take some time and practice. If you have not been a remote employee before, this will require a new mindset. The best advice I can offer is to make certain you have a designated space to perform your teaching duties. I have my own home-based office, my command center, and when I step into this office, I know I’m there to teach. It is a place which allows me to easily become focused on the task at hand as it is distraction-free, and once I leave the office at the end of the day, I know it is time for me to begin to start my downtime. Was I able to become this well-disciplined right away? It did take time and practice as I had to learn how to rely upon myself, rather than arrive at my place of employment and later clock-out at a particular time, knowing my day was completed.

When I first began teaching online, I checked my online classes all the time, then I gradually developed a rhythm. Now I know how to use alerts and respond in a timely manner, and I have a feel for how to manage the many responsibilities of an online class. Over time you will develop this type of innate sense as well. Most important of all, I keep in mind every day why I teach, which is more important to me than anything else. In a learner-centered environment, an educator must be acutely aware of the needs of their learners and ready to action. Therefore, my form of balance is unique, similar to the type of environment I teach in. The more dedicated you are for the learners you teach, the more likely you may need to adapt the strategies I’ve described as well. Instead of creating a Work-Life Balance, perhaps you will create an Educator-Learner Balance. Always take care of your learners and yourself.

Dr. Bruce A. Johnson is an inspirational author, writer, and teacher.

Dr. Johnson’s career has involved helping others learn, including people and organizations. His roles have included Manager of Training and Development, Human Performance Improvement Consultant, Online Instructor, Career Coach, Curriculum Developer, Manager of Faculty Development, and Chief Academic Officer.

Since 2005, Dr. J has specialized in distance learning, adult education, faculty development, online teaching, career management, career development, and human performance improvement. He has a Ph.D. in Postsecondary and Adult Education, a Certificate in Training and Performance Improvement, and a Master of Business Administration, MBA. Presently Dr. J is a Core Faculty member for one of the premiere online universities.

As a scholar practitioner, Dr. J was published in a scholarly journal and he has been a featured presenter at an international distance learning conference. He has also published books, eBooks, and over 200 online articles about adult learning, higher education, distance learning, online teaching, and career development, helping to fulfill his life’s mission to teach, mentor, write, and inspire others.

To learn more about resources that are available for educators, along with career and professional development, please visit: http://www.drbruceajohnson.com/

Article Source: https://EzineArticles.com/expert/Dr._Bruce_A._Johnson/834483

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/10273729

Five Strategies That Will Inspire Your Students to Learn in a Virtual Classroom

The shift to virtual learning which occurred in 2020 may have changed higher education in a profound manner, even after the crisis that caused the transition to occur is finally resolved. Students who have never taken an online class now realize they can learn in this manner. Yet many educators who never taught in this environment understand teaching online is not easier than teaching in a traditional classroom. A lack of visual and verbal cues presents an immediate learning curve for anyone who is just starting to teach online. In addition, the learning management system alone cannot be relied upon as the reason why students succeed in this type of environment. However, virtual learning has already established a proven track record of meeting the needs of students.

One of the challenges educators must learn to address involves engaging students they cannot see in the learning process. Even the most experienced online educators can find it challenging to do at times, especially for students who are not responsive to outreach attempts. I think about this very topic every time I start a new term, and I’m always re-evaluating how to evolve and inspire students in new ways. As an example, the current time period was a significant factor in my thought process as I set up my new classes and recorded the first week videos. I knew the choice of words and tone could make a considerable impact on students, during a time of heightened emotions. Over time, and with practice, I’ve developed strategies to inspire my students I believe you will find useful as well.

What Creates a Virtual Classroom?

Do you consider what your students feel or experience when they first log onto the classroom? What is the classroom to them? Some learning management systems are fairly user friendly and some are not. The discussion forum is generally the heart of the classroom and where most activity takes place. There may likely be many places for them to look for their course materials and information. Are students frustrated because they cannot find what they need?

I asked those questions to have you think about your students and then consider what you can do to help them better navigate through the required technology. Perhaps you can post an announcement or create a short guide. I create weekly Preparation Guides to help students with the upcoming course week, while also sharing additional resources and my perspective of the course topics for the week. I also post a weekly Course Announcement with a to-do list, to help students keep organized. This may help you and your students as well.

Five Strategies You Can Implement to Inspire Your Students

If you were to itemize those strategies you use now to help engage students in a virtual learning process, which would you consider to be the most inspiring? Which strategies help you feel the most connected to your students as you interact with them? The following five methods may encourage you to try a new approach or re-evaluate how you work with your online students now. I’ve learned these strategies from my own online teaching practice, along with time spent working in faculty development.

Strategy #1: Be Actively Engaged with Your Students

Discussions are the heart of any virtual class and this is where you can add incredible value and meaning for students. Consider how they approach the assigned question or questions for the week. Your students will attempt to read, understand, and interpret the required topics. It is possible they will post a substantive response, something which analyzes the concepts and encourages others to engage with them, while demonstrating what they’ve learned.

More often though, the initial posts are a good attempt at addressing the requirements, with some thought given to the assigned course materials, and general opinion statements infused into what is written. There may be some improvement in the level of writing as students move from undergraduate to graduate coursework, yet I’ve seen the same writing patterns continue throughout all degree programs.

This is why your involvement becomes critical for learning and how you can inspire your students to become engaged in the discussions at a much deeper level. While their initial response may be more reactive in nature, your posts can encourage them to think further, through the use of probing questions, while providing insight and context for the topics being studied. You likely have the experience and knowledge to share with them, to provide a real-world perspective they may not have considered, and they may also have experiences you can encourage them to provide. When you provide substantive and engaging posts, you are establishing a standard for your students to follow, and you are validating their effort or attempt to address the assigned question. I’ve found validation is necessary for many to continue making an attempt or continue with a follow-up post.

Strategy #2: Direct Involvement is Required

There are many words used to describe an online educator. The essence of the work you perform in a classroom is that of an educator. When you are interacting with your students you could consider yourself to be a teacher as you are addressing specific subjects, along with the improvement of academic skills. The word facilitator is used as well, to denote involvement with processes and procedures. I believe the words which involve educating and teaching students are most appropriate as both are indicators of the active involvement of anyone who is involvement in this role. I’m not only involved in helping to educate and teach students, I’m also a coach and mentor.

Regardless of the words used to define yourself, direct involvement in a virtual class is required. From my experience, you cannot check in two or three times a week, answer questions, complete the minimally required feedback, post the minimally required discussion responses, and hope this will inspire your students to become highly engaged in the learning process. If they observe you are minimally involved in class, what do they perceive your attitude to be, and how will they likely respond in return? As an example, my goal is to post a reply to each student at least once for each discussion. I want to make certain I’ve helped each student continue their original post in some manner.

Strategy #3: Craft Feedback which Connects with Your Students

There are two forms of feedback. The first type of feedback fulfills the basic requirement of telling the students how points were earned. This may include a few comments and/or a rubric being returned when the gradebook is updated. Students gain minimal value from this type of feedback as it does not teach or address their developmental needs.

The feedback I’m recommending is more in-depth. For a written assignment, the first step I take is to download a copy of the student’s paper. I then use my feedback as a teaching opportunity by inserting commentary that includes my insight, suggestions, and questions. Then when I return the paper, I’ll also include a rubric to support the feedback provided within the paper. For discussions, I make certain to avoid canned comments and try make it personalized. As an example, I’ll provide video feedback to connect with students directly. I want it to feel as if I am having a conversation with them, even if it is a one-way conversation, as they get to see and hear me. This also encourages them to contact me after reviewing it to discuss it further.

Strategy #4: Create a Persona in the Virtual Classroom

As an online educator, you want to create some form of a persona or develop an online identity in which you have a visible personality. If you are able to upload a photo of yourself to your profile, a professional photo will go a long way towards helping your students seeing you as a real person. Next, consider how you want to be portrayed or perceived by students in the classroom.

While you want to remain professional and academic in nature, can you also allow yourself to share anything personal in nature? For example, in my introduction I will share something about my hobbies, favorite television shows, and movies, along with my professional accomplishments and achievements. I find this helps me connect with students and creates a positive online persona.

Strategy #5: Use Words to Represent You Thoughtfully and Carefully

Any educator who “works” or “teaches” in a virtual environment quickly learns of the challenge for communicating in this type of classroom. You are using written words in the place of verbal communication, and those words can be easily misinterpreted as you aren’t there to explain what was meant, should students not understand your message. In addition, they are likely online and working at different times than you are, given the accessible nature of most learning management systems.

This means there must be thought given to every message posted and email or message sent. If you feel any emotional reaction to what you are writing, try what I do and create what you want to communicate first in a Word document. Then if you need time to think further about the message, set it aside and wait for a short period of time, to center yourself and feel good about sending it. If you are not certain how to reply, the best solution might be to ask the student to call you. The more careful you are about sending your communication, the more you will continue to develop productive relationships with your students, and in turn this will inspire them to stay engaged in the class.

Virtual Learning Should Never Feel Distant

When students are first assigned to your class, and they have never been assigned to one of your classes before, they do not know anything about you. How they come to know you is through perceptual cues, which includes posts and messages they read. An inherent challenge that makes getting to know an instructor even more difficult is the separation factor. At the start of a class students may feel separated, until there are cues which indicate their instructor is going to be easily accessible and readily available for them. The use of welcome videos at my school is a very help strategy for bridging the virtual gap at the start of a class. I also establish Office Hours and provide a direct contact phone number for students to call. For classes which involve complex course projects I share an appointment scheduling link, making it easy to find a time convenient for their schedule to arrange a one-on-one appointment.

Regardless of the approach you use, every instructional strategy you implement should be done with the purpose of closing the virtual gap. I’ve found students who feel connected to their instructor, because of the instructor’s responsiveness, meaningful feedback, engaging discussion posts, thoughtful communication, and ease of accessibility, are those who are going to be most engaged in the learning process. When they feel challenged by the class, they will be more likely to reach out and ask questions because of the rapport developed. There is a bond created and a sense the instructor cares about their ongoing development. If you’ve not taught in this environment before I can tell you this: You have to earn the engagement of your students in a different manner. When you do accomplish this goal, it becomes extremely rewarding and personally fulfilling to state: You are an online educator.

Dr. Bruce A. Johnson is an inspirational author, writer, and teacher.

Dr. Johnson’s career has involved helping others, including people and organizations. His roles have included Manager of Training and Development, Human Performance Improvement Consultant, Online Instructor, Career Coach, Curriculum Developer, Manager of Faculty Development, and Chief Academic Officer.

Since 2005, Dr. J has specialized in distance education, adult education, faculty development, online teaching, career management, career development, and human performance improvement. He has a Ph.D. in Postsecondary and Adult Education, a Certificate in Training and Performance Improvement, and a Master of Business Administration, MBA. Presently Dr. J is a Core Faculty member for one of the premiere online universities.

As a scholar practitioner, Dr. J was published in a scholarly journal and he has been a featured presenter at an international distance education conference. He has also published books, eBooks, and over 200 online articles about adult learning, higher education, distance learning, online teaching, and career development, helping to fulfill his life’s mission to teach, mentor, write, and inspire others.

To discover resources available for educators, along with career and professional development, please visit: http://www.drbruceajohnson.com/

Article Source: https://EzineArticles.com/expert/Dr._Bruce_A._Johnson/834483

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/10280794

10 Reading To Children Tips You Need To Learn Now

We are all aware that today, most children are so much more interested in watching television for hours, playing video games throughout the night, and gossiping on the Internet than they are in reading.

According to recent figures from the U.S. Department of Education, children are spending an average of four to six hours daily watching TV or movies; and that’s before the Coronavirus pandemic.

It has been proven, time and time again, that children who read achieve.

They do better in school and in life.

“Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.” – Frederick Douglass

Children who read tend to accomplish higher test and exam scores more often than their peers who read less often. However, getting children to simply open a book can sometimes be very tricky for parents and teachers alike.

Realize this, it is never too soon to get your child on the path to reading.

The U.S. Department of Education recommend that parents begin to read to their baby when they are six months old. The reason being, that hearing words over and over, time and time again, help them become familiar with those words.

Reading to your baby is one of the best ways to help them learn.

You can start by simply spending some time talking to your infant and toddler thereby helping them to develop the vocabulary they will need to enter school and begin to read.

And, in due course, as you point to and name the objects around them, they will start to understand and associate the words with the objects. In a short while, they will eventually begin to add those words into her vocabulary.

If, after a while, after a few years, you come to the conclusion that your child is showing little to no interest in reading, relax, there is hope.

“There are many little ways to enlarge your world. Love of books is the best of all.” – Jacqueline Kennedy

Sometimes parents have to be creative and get a little sneaky. You can still turn your reluctant child into a reader.

The following 10 tips can help parents get their most stubborn children to read year-round:

1. Make the words come alive

When you read to children, pick a book that has large print. Point at each word as you read it. This way your child will recognize and understand that the word being spoken is the word they see.

And to add to that, did you know that a child’s love for reading can grow when the words come to life? After reading, go out and share that experience as a family.

This can create a deeper family bond, and has the added power of putting the words into visual context.

What do I mean?

If you are reading to your child a book on bunny rabbits, go to a pet shop. Let your child see the rabbits, recite a few words from the book as you point to the rabbits.

This creates a powerful combination; the child can relate to what they’re hearing and seeing; making reading as fun as possible.

2. Read to open long-term dialogue

One of the best things you can do to ensure that your child will grow up reading well and loving to read is to read to them every day.

As we said earlier, reading together will create a special and strong bond between the two of you.

And this has an extremely important added benefit that will help them open the doors for a dialogue that will continue throughout the more trying years of adolescence.

The U. S. Department of Education suggests that, when parents read to children, it is important that they take the time to discuss new words.

Take the time to explain what each new word means and do your best to include as much sensory methods as you can; sight, hearing, touching.

“Today a reader, tomorrow a leader.” – Margaret Fuller

3. Listen to your child

When parents spend time talking and reading to children, they should also take the time to listen to their children.

This will help their children get ready to read faster.

When you read and talk to your child use sounds, gestures, songs, and even words that rhyme to help your child learn about language and its many uses. Inspire your child to do the same and be attentive to them.

This is vital.

There’s nothing worse than a child feeling they are being ignored.

When you go out with your child to the supermarket, practice pointing out the printed words there; you can point to a fruit, and ask your child what that fruit is and ask them to spell it and talk about it for a minute.

4. Never leave home without it

Take some books with you wherever you go. You never know when your child gets excited to read, and when they do, cherish the moment, and take full advantage of it.

Of course, this can also be beneficial at times when you don’t wish to be disturbed, so by handing over a book to your child it gives them fun activities to do to entertain themselves with, and it keeps them occupied while you’re driving, chatting with friends, or running errands.

5. Keep the books within easy reach

A well as creating a quiet, special place in your home for your child to read, write, and draw, make it a point to keep the books and all other reading materials within easy reach of your child.

Perhaps you can provide your child with their own bookshelf or small bookcase. This will not only make them feel special, but it will also communicate to them that reading is special.

An added bonus could be you reaching out for a book on their shelf for you to read in front of the child. This way the child can see that you are also reading, and this will make them realize that reading is important.

“So please, oh PLEASE, we beg, we pray, Go throw your TV set away, And in its place you can install, A lovely bookshelf on the wall.” – Roald Dahl, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

6. Read a favorite book over and over again

Get into the habit of recognizing your child’s favorite books, and read them over and over again. Repetition has the power of making the words sink in further and further into the child’s mind.

Also, you can think of ways to make it more fun each time you read that favorite book.

Be creative.

Time and time again, read the stories that have rhyming words and lines that repeat, and have your child join in the fun.

7. Provide encouragement

Parents play a crucial role by reading to children, and this greatly affects the child’s education. Children whose parents encourage them to read are more likely to read far more books than those parents leave reading up to them.

Encourage your child to read as often as possible, without pressurizing them, as this may put them off reading. Reading to children requires tactical persuasion, and getting children to read by themselves requires creative encouragement.

“Reading without reflecting is like eating without digesting.” – Edmund Burke

8. The early bedtime trick

Here’s a great coaxing approach that many successful parents have used in the past to read to children. Set your child’s bedtime to be 30 minutes before lights out.

Allow them time to perform all the before bedtime duties; such as brushing their teeth, getting into their pajamas, saying their good-nights to others, using the bathroom, and so on.

Once done, let them happily hop into bed, and then you open their favorite book, or book of their choice, and you read to them.

This is to be done before their official lights out bedtime.

After that, simply smile and say, “It’s time for bed, now. Would you like lights out, or would you like to stay up and read for a bit longer?”

More often than not, unless the child is particularly tired, they’ll choose to read awhile longer. This way they think it’s their idea (powerful, huh!).

Allow the child to choose whichever book they like to read until the time comes where you kiss them and bid them a goodnight and turn the lights out.

9. Summer reading enticement

Where possible, sign up for a local summer reading club at your local library, or arrange to read with your neighbors’ children out in the back garden. Have them take turns reading to children that are present (some love to show off their reading skills).

On a rainy summer’s day, with the advanced technology of these days, you can always have your child read to their grandmother and grandfather via the Internet.

If your local library is closed, or your child doesn’t want to be cooped indoors, you can always take them out to a close park, lay a blanket on the grass and read to each other.

Practice the art of parents reading to children, then children reading to parents.

Think of ways you and your child, and other children, can have fun with it.

“I believe we should spend less time worrying about the quantity of books children read and more time introducing them to quality books that will turn them on to the joy of reading and turn them into lifelong readers.” – James Patterson

10. Read the entire book before you see the movie

If your child is keen to see a particular movie, get the book and have the child read it first before you take them to the movie.

Make it a ‘rule’ that you do not take them to the movie until they’ve read the entire book.

This will encourage them to read, and the added bonus is that they may understand the movie more because they read the book with you, and you, more than likely, added life to it; explaining things the child didn’t understand.

There you have your 10 reading to children tips that you need to learn and implement now, or at least, as soon as possible.

Reading is very important for children. It prepares them for adulthood.

Reading is a prerequisite to success and perhaps everything in life.

If you think about it, in all areas of life, there is something to read: Road signs, food labels, newspapers, prescription labels, letters/emails from banks or work. We are all surrounded with things to read.

We cannot avoid reading… Period.

“Reading should not be presented to children as a chore, a duty. It should be offered as a gift.” – Kate DiCamillo

Do your best, make it one of your life’s missions, to turn your children into avid readers.

The more methods that you can combine into your child’s reading experience, the more likely you are to help your child grow into a strong reader.

Always, constantly think of ways to infuse into your child that reading is fun. And, for you as a parent, remember that you can never be too old, too wacky, or too wild to pick up a book and read it with your child.

Reading to children is a must in every household.

“Stories are the most important thing in the world. Without stories, we wouldn’t be human beings at all.”

Hani Al-Qasem is a published author, a Certified EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques) Practitioner, and inspiration specialist.

Your Child’s 67% Risk of Growing Up Illiterate… Shocking Video Reveals Schoolboards Are At Fault And How This Will Affect Your Child… Watch FREE Video

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Maintain Excellence in Online Teaching While Addressing Learner Challenges

Welcome to the new normal, teaching adult students from a laptop or computer. Or at least this is what many instructors are beginning to experience. Yet there is a segment of higher education with those, like myself, who have already been providing transformative education via virtual classrooms for quite a long time. Not only are we well-adjusted to this type of learning, we already know it is an effective method for teaching students, even while many instructors are just now making this discovery and attempting to adapt their teaching strategies.

What gave me a unique perspective of online teaching to begin with was my experience as an online learner. I earned a majority of my academic degrees from an online school, and this taught me the value of presence, interactions, and feedback. Now with 15 years under my belt and counting, and roles from leadership to faculty development included, I have developed a sense of how to create conditions that are conducive to learning within an environment in which you cannot see your learners. Yet even with that level of experience, I am well aware that no class is ever going to perform the same, as no two learners are alike, and the needs of learners continue to evolve over time.

What I have established are a set of online teaching practices that I consider to be continued works in progress, as I look to always reflect upon what is working or needs updating as I interact with my learners. What I seek to do is to maintain a high level of excellence in teaching, which translates into having a student-centered focus in everything I do. I set the bar high for myself, as I know the developmental needs of the learner must always be the primary concern for what I am doing, any time I post a message, send a message, or I’m involved in class discussions. Yet even with the best of intentions, there may be learners who are difficult to connect with or who do not want to be responsive to outreach attempts, along with those who are not well-suited to asynchronous communication.

Whenever you are challenged by a learner, this becomes an opportunity to demonstrate you really do care about this learner as a person. Or you can allow yourself to become further isolated and indifferent to what this learner actually needs because of the improper situation you find yourself in now. From my own experience, the greater the learner challenge, the more of a defining moment it becomes for your teaching practice.

Be Certain to Have Enough Time Budgeted

What I have discovered, as an essential element of my strategy, is to allocate enough time for my teaching duties, and budget additional time for learner contact. Learners are often surprised I am willing to offer one-on-one instruction with them, and yet from my perspective this should be part of an instructor’s strategy for responsive availability. More importantly, this allows me to be available when issues arise or I need to contact a learner who is struggling. It is necessary to monitor class conditions and intervene when needed, to help prevent learners from disengaging.

Consider What Learners Expect

When learners begin a new course, there is some apprehension about what to expect from a new instructor. Their initial questions may include: Will this instructor be easy to get along with? Will this instructor help me when I need it? Will I be able to reach this instructor when I need assistance? What will it be like to interact with this instructor? There are many other questions similar to these which are likely to arise and accompany a feeling of discomfort until the class is underway. There may also be a sense of hope that the class will bring about a new start if the last class did not bring about the outcomes or results desired.

Initially learners may be open to your feedback and the developmental notes you have to share. Or there may been negative experiences in the prior class and now they have a resistant attitude about instructor feedback and guidance. Some learners may not be well-prepared or have the proper disposition for learning to begin with, and the longer this continues the more uncooperative they may appear to be when working in class. What I have learned is to look past the initial struggles and see the potential in each learner, no matter how hard I must work to help each of them, even those who I ultimately cannot help because they do not want to be helped.

Addressing Learner Challenges While Maintaining Excellence

When I began teaching online 15 years ago, I made a transition from teaching in a corporate classroom environment to a virtual environment. The immediate adjustment I made was to the loss of watching the expression on learner faces as they engaged with the course materials, while being available to answer their questions and interact with them. Fortunately, I was hired by an online school that offered extensive training and I was able to grow as a professional with that school for almost a decade. I was able to learn how to translate my classroom teaching style into a virtual style, through discussions, feedback, and every interaction.

Even with this level of experience, there are common challenges that arise on occasion. These are issues you have likely encountered as well, and will continue to experience throughout your teaching practice. What is going to further intensify each of these scenarios is the current worldwide crisis, as many learners may be feeling heightened emotions and anxiety. For each possible scenario, I’ve shared strategies to help you address the learner in a manner which allows you to still maintain excellence in your online teaching practice.

Students Who Do Not Want to Respond:

An online class is not the type of class you can check into two or three times a week, and hope all learners will be actively engaged on their own. Your active engagement and presence, as an online instructor, is needed not only to reassure your learners you are available, you want to be checking in and following their ongoing progress. If a learner is failing to meet the goals of the course, some form of contact is needed.

There is a possibility the learner will not respond. This is when the learner may fall off the grid, unless you are keeping track of your learners in some organized manner. If a message of some form was not effective, a call may help to bridge the distance and create a bond between you and this learner. The point is to encourage the learner as a person, with empathy and concern.

Students Who Do Not Want to Cooperate:

There are going to be times throughout a course when you will make a request from a learner, whether it is something insignificant or something much more important such as a plagiarism incident, and the learner does not respond. This may make you feel as if the learner has intentionally ignored you and there may be a negative emotional reaction felt on your part. I understand as I had to grow myself with regards to emotional intelligence and I am far from perfect.

As a teacher, we are still human ourselves, and when we are faced with challenges our own emotions can spill over into our work. So I speak from experience when I say, you have to learn to control how you feel before you respond to any incident which causes you to feel something negative. When you have your emotions under control, approach this learner with the intent to demonstrate empathy, even if this is a plagiarism incident, as it can still be a teachable moment. There are learners who are easily intimidated by instructors, and a phone call can change the entire impression held by simply making a human connection.

Students Who Do Not Want to Engage:

This also speaks to the learner who has not been substantially engaged in the course and you realize there is the potential for this learner to be withdrawn soon. Now more than ever, a personal outreach attempt is needed. This learner needs to know there is an instructor who cares about him or her as a person. I understand it is likely you may have a late policy and be unable to accept late work; however, attempt to work with this learner in whatever manner you can by developing a Plan of Action for re-engagement back into the class. Some learners get a week or two behind and then develop a sense of giving up. Your words of encouragement can bring them back to the class.

Students Who Are Not Receptive:

These are the learners who do not seem to read your feedback and implement what you have suggested through the guidance provided. If this is what you are perceiving to be the case, then go back and review the feedback provided. Ask yourself this question: How would you respond to your own feedback if you were the learner? Then consider new strategies to refresh how you provide feedback. Can you ask a question to help them think further about the course topics? Can you provide video feedback? I’ve been providing video feedback and discovering learners feel a better connection to the guidance offered with this approach.

Students Who Cannot Communicate Properly:

This is the scenario in which learners send email or classroom messages which are not appropriate for a variety of reasons. It takes time and practice to learn how to communicate solely through the use of words, without considering the tone that might be inferred. How do you respond to a message which you believe is improper? What I do not recommend is starting a long email or message chain back and forth. This can only escalate the matter. I suggest you either encourage a phone call appointment, or you call the learner. Again, this is a matter of building a bond with the learner and demonstrating empathy, to help the learner understand this is not a me versus the instructor situation. Even if the situation cannot be resolved in one call, you can still establish some measure of completion with the call.

You Can Maintain High Standards and Be Responsive

Learners who challenge you are not an indicator you have failed as an instructor in any manner. There will never be a perfect classroom environment, with a perfect set of learners. This just does not exist in reality. The nature of distance learning is going to present unique challenges for adults to adapt to and some will do so better than others. Some adults will find it challenging to learn in this environment, and their frustrations will appear in class posts and messages. Other adult learners will stop making an attempt and begin to disengage from the class. What you can do, as the instructor, is to develop your own set of high standards, and maintain a highly active and engaged presence in your online class. Be determined to “see” each learner as an individual, each with the potential to learn, and be ready to respond in a caring and empathetic manner. When any of the above scenarios occurs, this is time not to feel you have been beaten down, but your time to shine. Every time you are able to help the most challenged of all learners, you will remember why it is you love to teach. This will be transformative not only for you, but your learners as well.

Dr. Bruce A. Johnson is an inspirational author, writer, and teacher.

Dr. Johnson’s background involved helping others, including people and organizations. His roles have included Manager of Training and Development, Human Performance Improvement Consultant, Online Instructor, Career Coach, Curriculum Developer, Manager of Faculty Development, and Chief Academic Officer.

Since 2005, Dr. J has specialized in distance learning, adult learning, faculty development, online teaching, career management, career development, and human performance improvement. He has a Ph.D. in Postsecondary and Adult Education, a Certificate in Training and Performance Improvement, and a Master of Business Administration, MBA. Presently Dr. J is a Core Faculty member for one of the premiere online universities.

As a scholar practitioner, Dr. J was published in a scholarly journal and he has been a featured presenter at an international distance learning conference. He has also published books, eBooks, and over 200 online articles about adult learning, higher education, distance learning, online teaching, and professional development, helping to fulfill his life’s mission to teach, mentor, write, and inspire others.

To discover resources available for educators, along with professional development, please visit: http://www.drbruceajohnson.com/

Article Source: https://EzineArticles.com/expert/Dr._Bruce_A._Johnson/834483

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Read the Best Elemental School Book by Qedem J Nesher for Your Child

Qedem J. Nesher is the author of the book Elemental School. Elemental School is a story before our earth was made, even the entire universe. So it must be a different universe and ‘Elemental School’ is additionally in the spot we’ve never experienced. So you can figure out how to include in this school from understanding this. You can likewise understand that this other world is firmly associated with our reality. That is the key. We could be there, and we will be there.

In the event that you need to figure out how to make the earth, what would it be advisable for you to learn in school? For sure on the off chance that you must be one of the individuals who make this entire universe?

At that point, you should learn at Elemental School in this story and learn one basic expertise.

Search for the Best Young Adult Fantasy Books
Searching for the Best Young Adult Fantasy Books? We have all the best ones right here. Let’s face it, books are fun, yet arrangements are shockingly better! On the off chance that you are an enthusiast of youthful grown-up fantasy arrangement, you will become mixed up in this post.

Now and again we need a departure from the real world, and these youthful grown-up fantasy books are our pass to the universes past even our own (extremely dynamic) minds. Peruse these Best Young Adult Fantasy Books that will whisk you away from your regular day to day existence and bring you stories loaded with experience, sentiment, and-maybe in particular of all-enchantment.

Find the Best Young Adult Fantasy Book Online
Life can be too occupied to even consider spending hours searching for a book. In case you’re a high school searching for a book that is audacious and energizing and creative, at that point we can’t suggest fantasy and sci-fi enough. Solid and fearless characters that investigate the most stunning grounds believable; prohibited sentiments that merit gambling everything for; mysterious forces and animals that can assist you with breaking liberated from your regular day to day existence; these accounts cause the difficulty to feel conceivable and push the limits of our general surroundings.

Peruse so anyone might hear a popular elementary school book is an incredible method to encourage class conversations, urge understudies to feel great sharing, and help you and your understudies build-up which esteems will characterize your class’ personality.

If you are searching for the Best Young Adult Fantasy Books [http://qedemnesher.com/young-adult-children-fantasy-books/] for your child then Qedem J Nesher offers the best elemental school books. Elemental School [http://qedemnesher.com/elemental-school-book/] is a story before our earth was made, even the entire universe.

Article Source: https://EzineArticles.com/expert/Sachin_Jadon/1307125

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Learn How to Become Visible and Accessible in a Virtual Classroom

Do you feel adequately prepared to teach as an online instructor? Are you easily accessible and available for your learners? Do learners perceive you as being visible and uniquely identifiable as their instructor?

One of the challenges higher education has faced recently is providing quality education via a virtual classroom environment, especially for classes not normally assigned to be taught remotely. Even for experienced online instructors, there are inherent challenges that are based upon the nature of working in this manner and will always be present, requiring dedication and time to address. One of the most pressing challenges is becoming a real person to learners, someone who is visible and available to address their needs, and more importantly, accessible when needed to answer their concerns.

A virtual classroom immediately changes the dynamics of teaching, as to how instructors interact with learners. Instead of visual, verbal, and vocal cues, now interactions are based primarily upon written text. There are exceptions to this rule and include the occasional use of web meetings as a supplemental means of engaging with learners. One of the challenges for reliance on written communication is the one-sided nature of sending messages and creating classroom posts. There is only a perceived tone and if the formatting is less than academically accurate or precise, the message and its meaning will be interrupted.

Within an online class, learners are watching for clues or indicators that their instructor is actively present, not just someone who is remotely working and occasionally checking into class. The greater they perceive the instructor is present, the more likely they will be motivated to also be present and engaged in class. Creating a highly visible presence requires skillful practice, implemented as part of an ongoing set of teaching strategies.

Welcome to the “Always Open” Classroom

The benefit of a virtual classroom is the seemingly unlimited access to it, along with the course resources and materials. This “always open” mentality changes the perception as to what learners expect of their instructors as to when they should be available. I’m finding response time has a significant impact on how learners view my involvement in the class, and shapes how they respond in turn to my feedback.

In other words, if I am highly responsive and available, learners are more likely to engage with me when I send messages or post feedback. The challenge for me is learning when to be present and when to give myself a break or some downtime away from the classroom. Just because the classroom is “always open” does not mean I, or any online instructor, need to be “always on” and present at all times.

How to Become Visible and Accessible in a Virtual Classroom

To be noticed in a virtual classroom is the first step in being seen. Yet learners who expect an instructor to be highly visible and accessible expect high quality interactions, and someone who is highly engaged, responsive, and frequently available to assist them. When I thought about sharing my strategies for teaching in a virtual classroom, I took into consideration the fact instructors will have varying degrees of experience working in this environment. However, there are basics which can be implemented by anyone to create an online presence that is perceived as visible and readily accessible to learners.

Strategy One: Personalize the Learning Experience

This is an aspect of online teaching I’m always aware of and it has to do with the development of ways in which I can humanize the learning experience for learners. One area in which I’ve grown is with my introduction. I used to share professional information only but over time it has evolved and now I also include casual information that can help show me to be a real person. For example, I talk about favorite television shows and movies, and I’ve also included a photo of my office buddy, which happens to be a pet who comes into my office at times. I still hesitate to share too much personal information about my family or spouse, believing there is a professional relationship needed to be maintained.

What I recommend to anyone who is trying to become a “real” person to their learners is to share what you believe will help make connections with them, without sharing anything too personal. The idea is to connect with and inspire your learners, and find a way to bridge the gap between a resume and casual conversation. You could also share a LinkedIn profile link as that is professional in nature and allows learners to get to know more about your background, provided you’ve kept it up-to-date.

Strategy Two: Teach Through Weekly Course Messages

For those instructors who teach in traditional online classes, there is typically a method of posting course announcements and/or weekly overviews. With my online university, I have an ability to use a weekly course announcement as a teaching tool. For example, I will record a video and the video is a narration of me reviewing a PowerPoint presentation I have already developed. The presentation provides an overview of the week ahead, including assigned readings, course concepts, an in-depth examination of specific topics, and an exploration of the required learning activities. I will also include motivational sayings and other essential items to help prepare learners.

When I’ve completed feedback, I will also post a course announcement, as a recorded video, and I often use this as a teaching tool. I may include supplemental resources, along with additional tips, strategies, and suggestions. If you have an ability to transform long written lectures into some form of interactive video, with or without a PowerPoint presentation, I recommend you try it as learners get the experience of being in class and a feeling of personalized instruction. This also relates to the first strategy about personalizing the learning experience. If there is any method available for you to add your instruction to the course, be it through the use of messages or something else, you’ll find this allows you to share your subject matter expertise and knowledge.

Strategy Three: Plan an Approach for Class Participation

Do you think ahead about how you will participate in your class discussions? A weekly class discussion can be your opportunity to help determine how your learners are working with and grasping the course topics, along with being able to apply what they have learned. While the discussion responses tend to be similar in scope, you still can help prompt them to continue to learn by asking questions in a planned manner, such as Socratic questioning techniques.

When I post a reply to a learner, I start by acknowledging something they’ve said within their response, then I build upon it by adding my own insight and supplemental resources, and conclude with a follow-up question. As to a planned strategy, consider starting early in the week and post a reply to every learner at least once. This will help encourage learners to become actively engaged throughout the week. Whatever your strategy is, if you have a plan it will help you become better prepared to be substantively engaged.

Strategy Four: Develop a Plan for Office Hours

Do you have multiple methods of contact available for your learners? For most online schools, the traditional method of contact is through classroom messaging or email. Now web tools such as Zoom are available and can be used for virtual class meetings. A challenge for adjunct online instructors is determining how to balance availability with other full-time responsibilities. My recommendation is to offer office hours during a time when you know or anticipate you will be online working and available to return messages or accept calls.

If you want to continue to follow the first strategy and personalize the learning experience, I recommend you offer availability by phone. I do this to prevent long emails back and forth, which can end up frustrating both you and the learner if the message is not understood. More importantly, I find this presents me with an opportunity to continue to teach the course concepts in a one-on-one manner, which can further bridge the distance learning gap. I remember being an online learner and how it felt when I had to wait for a reply and the reply received did not fully address my question. If I had an ability to call my instructor, I would have done so. I know my learners greatly appreciate this extra time taken on my part. Perhaps you will consider it as well.

Manage Your Disposition at All Times

Becoming visible and easily accessible for learners does mean you will have more direct interactions. The benefit of increased availability is helping your learners when they request it, while demonstrating your care and concern for their developmental well-being. With increased communication comes an ability to also get to know your learners better. This also increases the possibility of conflict between you and your learners, especially if they are contacting you by phone and there isn’t a direct record of what was stated.

It will be up to you as to how you address each situation. For example, if a learner does not communicate appropriately, you can then restrict their communication to messaging or email only. I also recommend that with every phone call received or you initiate, you send a quick follow-up message or email to serve as a record. This will provide your school with a record of the conversation. What you must decide ahead of time, is you will maintain a positive frame of mind no matter how challenged you might feel by a learner. If at any time you believe a learner has not maintained proper communication, be it their tone or something else, you can advise them you will no longer continue the conversation and remind them of the Code of Conduct.

As the instructor, you must always try your best to remain calm and emotionally restrained when interacting with your learners. Your disposition helps to reinforce a perception you are interested in being an active part of the class. Visibility can take many forms and includes direct interactions with your learners, whether through discussions, messages, emails, or phone calls. The potential impact you can have on the progress and development of your learners increases significantly when you become easily accessible and use each opportunity presented as a time for teaching and learning. Whatever methods you use to become highly visible, make a conscious choice to be involved in your virtual classroom for the benefit of your learners, not just to make an appearance for the sake of being present.

Dr. Bruce A. Johnson is an inspirational author, writer, and teacher.

Dr. Johnson’s background involved helping others, including people and organizations. His roles have included Manager of Training and Development, Human Performance Improvement Consultant, Online Instructor, Career Coach, Curriculum Developer, Manager of Faculty Development, and Chief Academic Officer.

Since 2005, Dr. J has specialized in distance learning, adult learning, faculty development, online teaching, career management, career development, and human performance improvement. He has a Ph.D. in Postsecondary and Adult Education, a Certificate in Training and Performance Improvement, and a Master of Business Administration, MBA. Presently Dr. J is a Core Faculty member for one of the premiere online universities.

As a scholar practitioner, Dr. J was published in a scholarly journal and he has been a featured presenter at an international distance learning conference. He has also published books, eBooks, and over 200 online articles about adult learning, higher education, distance learning, online teaching, and professional development, helping to fulfill his life’s mission to teach, mentor, write, and inspire others.

To discover resources available for educators, along with professional development, please visit: http://www.drbruceajohnson.com/

Article Source: https://EzineArticles.com/expert/Dr._Bruce_A._Johnson/834483

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How Parents Can Organize the Day During Remote Learning at Home

Because we are in the middle of a pandemic, parents will have to take on more of the responsibility to ensure that their children get a quality education. Many schools will be operating on a remote learning program to some degree, but for such a program to be successful, parents need to organize their homes to be conducive to learning by making sure the home environment has everything their children need.

Parents should understand that their children need every educational advantage during these difficult times, and organizing the home for educational success is critical when participating in remote learning. This process starts by establishing a special place in the home where children can do their school work, study, read, research, etc. Most parents create a workstation in their child’s bedroom, but if another room in the house is more conducive to remote learning that room can be used. The area should have a desk and chair, resembling a work station from school, so the child can feel comfortable. The work station should include the following, as necessary:

  1. Books (bookshelf), magazines, and newspapers
  2. Pencils, pens, paper, and school supplies
  3. Computer, printer, and internet connection
  4. School information
  5. Globe

If parents want to do more in the room, they can display certificates, awards, report cards, and completed school assignments with good grades. For motivation, parents may want to display positive posters on the walls as well. Posting words and math problems can help the area resemble a real classroom more closely. The idea is to make this a positive educational environment because children will be spending a lot of their day-and possibly evening-in this room.

Once the room is completed parents may want to consider the schedule for remote learning. Most schools operating a remote learning program will establish a schedule, probably from 8:30 to 3:30. The curriculum will be set, and the school teacher will handle the actual teaching. The schools will need the support of the parents to ensure success with remote learning, especially with younger children who may have a hard time staying focused. Therefore, parents will spend their time monitoring their children to ensure that they are on target. They also need to make sure that they have the proper technology and everything is working. In addition, parents should make sure their children eat breakfast, lunch, and possibly a snack. Parents should also incorporate some kind of physical activity for their children during the day. As you can see, parents have a full-time job.

Some children will have a hard time adjusting to the remote learning format; if this happens, parents must speak with the school for assistance. Parents might also want to schedule some additional educational activities after the remote learning day is over so children can stay on target and not fall behind. Additional reading and writing activities are a good place to start. One way to encourage children to read is by placing reading materials in each room of the house. Children who see reading materials throughout the house will be influenced by what is important to the parents. This is a great seed to plant that will grow over time.

Parents must stick to routines so children know what is expected of them each day. Children still need time set aside to do their homework, eat, do chores, and engage in some fun activities with the family. Parents may also want to keep children engaged in other activities so they don’t become bored or depressed. A few special projects that parents can consider are:

  1. Learn to cook a special dish 6. Write letters to relatives
  2. Learn to shop for groceries 7. Take a computer class online
  3. Learn about financial literacy 8. Learn about the Bible
  4. Learn about playing the stock market 9. Learn how to play an instrument
  5. Learn how to play chess 10. Learn a new sport/game

The key is for parents to create an environment that fosters creativity at home so children can learn, play, and grow. That’s why it is so important to structure the children’s day with their best interests in mind.

Developing educationally successful children is one of parents’ most important jobs, but they should also remember that children need time to play and be children.

http://outskirtspress.com/ronniephillips and read ” Parent Involvement is Non-Negotiable” and ” High School Survival Kit”

Additional information at http://www.rpedservices.com

CategoryReference and Education » K 12

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