It can be challenging for nursery school teachers to teach their students the same things they would in a traditional nursery class. Sometimes, because of distance or other reasons, it is necessary to teach preschool online. Teaching a nursery class online requires you to develop creative ways of teaching and interacting with your students. Here are some tips:
1. Use Age-Appropriate Resources:
The Internet provides a wealth of resources for your preschool students beyond just educational games and songs. There are online storybooks specifically designed for early readers, virtual globes that allow you to learn about countries around the world or even an interactive floor map that allows your students to explore geography in a hands-on way.
2. Play Online Games Together:
There are plenty of websites that host preschool games suitable for young students. You may find some games to be a little advanced, but others might just be right up your class’ alley! This can be a good way for you and your students to bond and learn simultaneously.
3. Teach Students How to Use Technology:
Teaching preschool online can often result in students being more digitally literate than their face-to-face learning counterparts. It is important that they understand how to use technology safely and responsibly, and teaching them these skills in a digital classroom is a good way to do so.
4. Discuss What You Are Teaching:
In a traditional preschool classroom, the teacher may have students work on a craft or project as a way of reinforcing what they had just learned. This doesn’t have to change just because you’re teaching a nursery class online. If your students use an art program that teaches them about shapes and colours, talk about it with them and ask them questions to help solidify what they’ve learned.
5. Use Video Conferencing:
Video conferencing with your students is a good way for you and your preschoolers to connect, even if one of you is in another room or on the other side of the world. It gives your students a chance to see you in your teaching element, and you can see what they are working on at home.
6. Use Apps in the Classroom:
There are plenty of apps for mobile devices that can help make your life as a teacher easier when teaching preschool online. For example, there are apps available that allow you to keep track of a student’s behaviour or to help reinforce a particular lesson. You can also use apps as a way of communicating with parents, such as those that have calendars and grade books built right in.
7. Let Students Collaborate:
Whether it is via email, text message, Google Plus Hangouts, Skype, or any other online communication method, give your students the chance to work with one another. They can compare their answers on a math test or practice spelling words together; the possibilities are endless!
8. Make It Visual:
One of the benefits of teaching preschool online is that you don’t have to always rely on sound and text-based learning (although those do have their place). Many websites allow you to include visuals, whether it is through an image or a video.
9. Teach Students How to Ask Questions:
It can be frustrating when you are teaching an online nursery class, and students don’t ask questions but instead just guess at the answers. Remind them that asking questions makes learning more fun and help them to come up with questions they might have.
10. Give Your Students Time to Play:
You may be an expert on early childhood education, but it’s still important for preschool students to play. Set aside time each day for free play or encourage your students to use their imaginations outside of the classroom, too.
11. Stay Positive:
Don’t forget about the importance of positive reinforcement! When your students do something right, make sure they know it and give them words of encouragement for future activities – or “homework!”
12. Stay Organized:
Just like with traditional classrooms, your online classroom needs to stay organized. Find a system that works best for you and stick with it so that students are not overwhelmed with piles of papers or lost in the shuffle.
13. Have Parents Participate:
Planning an activity with parents can be an incredible way of keeping them involved and helping your students feel like they are part of something bigger. Whether it is a pizza party for reading or turning your backyard into a mini-garden, involving parents can make the learning experience more memorable for everyone.
14. Create Lesson Plans:
Don’t forget that you will need to create lesson plans that are accessible to parents. Whether you share them via Google Docs, Dropbox, or another method of sharing files with students and their parents, everyone needs to know what will be covered in the lessons throughout the week.
15. Make Time for You:
With so much of your time dedicated to teaching online nursery classes, it is important not to forget about yourself. Take time to wind down at the end of each day, spend time with friends and loved ones, or even cook a meal you don’t have to share with anyone else.
Online learning is a great way for children to get ahead of the curve in their education. We have all the resources parents need to make this decision easier by providing them with abundant academic information on our website. Contact us today if you want more information about how online courses can help prepare kids for kindergarten or elementary school.