How do we engage students in a Zoom session?

Are you looking for ways to make a Zoom session more interactive?

Below are three ideas for inviting students to participate meaningfully in a Zoom session.

1. Warm students up to using the chat at the start of a session. 

Remind them of the chat box function at the start and let them know that you or your co-facilitator will be monitoring the chat. Set an anchoring task at the start of the session.

Some examples of this could be:

  • “Before we start, use the chat box to name one thing that was new to you or interesting for you in the pre-reading/video.” Then you might debrief on what was shared.
  • “Before we start, can you identify one thing that you found hard to understand in the pre-reading/video?” Then you might use that to guide how you respond in the session.

2. Create moments for individual thinking time in the Zoom session. 

Invitations for individual reflection in the Zoom, with the expectation of sharing afterwards, can create engagement. There will be silence while learners engage in this way. Embrace it.

Some examples of this could be:

  • “Re-read the quote on the screen. Which part of this quote is the most important for you?” Post this in the chat.
  • “Look at the definition of xx” Which part is the hardest part for you to understand right now?” Post this in the chat and then we will try to clarify these parts for you.

3. End with personal sharing. 

Invite all students to consider the relevance of their learning.

Some examples of this could be:

  • “Take a minute on your own to think about what we have learnt during this session. What is one area you now feel more confident about?” Post it in the chat.
  • “Take a minute on your own to think about what we learned this session. What is one action you will take before we have our next session?” We can check in on these when we start next week. Post it in the chat.

What tips would you add for inviting engagement using the chat function? Share this with us on the MEA Workplace page.