How not to lose your e-learners

Remember learning like this?


What is this teacher doing wrong?

He’s being a Sage on the Stage. Lecture, lecture, blah, blah, blah … zzzzzzzzzzz.

He is not engaging the students but is talking at them.

And, so many instructors do the same thing! It happens online, as well, with major content dumping and little learning.

The problem is we tend to teach the way we were taught. Why?

Because modelling is the most powerful method of learning. When someone shows us how to do something, we see and hear far more than the lessons or skills being presented.

We mimic what and how our teachers have taught us.

 

Ready to learn how to teach in a better way?

This post is part of the ‘Hug Your E-Learners’ series to help you be the best online instructor and build e-courses that create happy learners who will like, participate and complete your course.

Tip #1:

After every new concept, stop and let your learners play with the ideas.

That is, create small, easy exercises to let learners play with the content and overcome confusion.

Remember, you are the content expert and have internalized the concepts or mastered the skills – your students have not.

Give them time to grasp it. Once they grasp it, they can apply it = successful learning.

Here is an example

    1. If you are facilitating an online course with a group discussion, throw a fun question to the group that gets them to explore a concept deeper. For instance, if you are asking learners to find a powerful niche and message for their businesses, ask them to determine the one magical focus of Walt Disney or Richard Branson that attracts so many customers to them. This fun question takes the pressure and focus off of the learners as they learn about a complex concept. Respond with an answer a few days later after an active discussion between learners.

If you are not facilitating an online course, but instead have a self-directed e-course, you can do the same exercise by asking the question and delaying the answer. Because it is a fun question that will pique their interest, they will be pondering the answer. The answer could be included in the following course module, or added to an interactive quiz making them think before they get it.

See a post on self-assessments and links to easily creating online assessments (i.e. little quizzes)

It simply is good teaching to add small, engaging exercises constantly thorough a course that allows learners to stop, breathe, practice and reflect on concepts.

To stop boring or overwhelming the learners, think about how they are doing and how they can absorb the information being provided.

See teaching in terms of supporting the process from baby steps to walking to running, each needing to be supported by the exercise before it.

And each step needs to be nurtured with good teaching, help, practice and feedback.

  • jock February 20, 2014, 4:14 am

    I agree. I’m an ESL teacher and that’s exactly what we do every day. You can’t tell someone about grammar and expect them to learn, they have to play with the idea.

    Reply
    • Dr. Kelly Edmonds February 20, 2014, 1:50 pm

      Agree! And I would think those learning a new language would be a bit more nervous, especially if they have relocated or want to immerse themselves in another culture. They need to have time and fun with learning to help them through that stress. :0)

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