zoom tips for educators and digital service providers special education

Zoom tips for educators and service providers

  1. If you are logged into Zoom and users are on your link, they CAN hear you/see you! Be sure to close down and end the sessions when you are not “live”.
  2. It is helpful to get on your session 5-10 minutes prior and allow everyone time to settle in and deal with any tech issues. You can always open it and post a sign and play music (starting at 10!) if you are engaged in other things.
  3. Keep sessions short and sweet.
  4. Provide a materials list ahead of time for families to gather supplies as needed.
  5. For group sessions you can control and keep people on “mute” while giving instruction to reduce noise, feedback, and distraction. On the bottom of the screen click “participants”, “mute all” or “unmute all”.
  6. You can also select “mute on entering” so new participants are automatically muted when they arrive.
  7. Provide a variety of non-verbal opportunities to respond (OTR) (Thumbs Up, Hands on your head if you…, use of colored post it’s) Printables: https://www.theteachertoolkit.com/index.php/tool/student-response-cards
  8. Allowing a few minutes of group unstructured time, where students can greet one another and catch up, helps to build community!
  9. By using the “I do, we do, you do” model, you are also modeling strategies for the parents. Invite parents to engage and join in during the session. Also, specify certain sessions where the student would be able to be more independent, and give caregivers some much needed down time.
  10. Provide a follow up activity related to your lesson that parents can engage in between sessions, such as an art extension activity.
  11. You can use the “screen share” feature to show videos to guide and lead your discussion. This can also be used as a tool for a shared reading experience through Epic Reading. What you want to share should be the first window up on your desktop so you can easily navigate there.
    • screen share feature
  12. throuse students not to accidentally hit the green screen share button, if they do, click the red button (upper middle of screen) to end their screen share.
  13. Zoom will always default to “mirroring” your images. If you are trying to work on reading, such as sight word cards, turn this feature off through “Preferences”, “Video” and unclick “mirror image”. You also have the option to “Touch up” your appearance.
    • zoom mirror video option
  14. Through the video preferences, you can also provide closed captioning by clicking on “Accessibility” and adjust the size display as needed.
    • zoom closed captioning
  15. To change your background, click on the arrow to the right of “Stop video”, click “Choose Virtual Background”. This can be glitchy and is not recommended to use if you are leading a session, but students enjoy this feature.
    • zoom background option
  16. Use the “comment section” to share any relevant links or documents.
  17. You can “Spotlight” a user, which means that the screen will stay on that person as they give instruction/direction. Click the three dots next to their name, and click “Spotlight Video”.
    • zoom spotlight user
  18. Remember to document all sessions. If a student is not made available, document your attempts using a log. It is helpful to assign someone to be responsible for taking attendance during the session. Also, with paid accounts by using the “Record” feature, it will document participants.
  19. For flow- use the comment section to have students respond to specific questions. Instead of constantly muting and unmuting, you can read their thoughts, ideas, and answers aloud to the group.
  20. You can opt to co-host a meeting with another participant, which gives power to mute all, manipulate the screen, etc.

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