Learner engagement has always been a huge challenge for teachers, be it a traditional or virtual classroom. It is important for a teacher to engage learners and develop meaningful relationships with them to understand their learning needs and challenges. The idea is to form a bond of trust and confidence.
But, when it comes to online tutoring, many teachers it find it a tad bit difficult to reach out to learners and engage them like they do in a brick-and-mortar classroom. One of the biggest reasons for this situation is the lack of knowledge of online teaching techniques that should be employed by the teachers.
Heun Wong, the founder of Crimson Scholars, puts this conundrum to an end by giving useful tips on engaging learners and building sustainable relationships with them, to online teachers in a webinar (#wizinar) to be held in collaboration with WizIQ on August 12, 2015.
Heun has been passionately involved in education and student development for over 5 years, having helped and taught learners across the world. He has studied educational practices very closely by working in various parts of the world as an educational consultant. His experience of teaching students from all over the world has helped him identify the deficiencies in educational practices.
In a conversation with me, Heun shares more about his teaching experience, online tutoring, student-teacher relationship and his upcoming webinar.
Me: You have always been connected with education. First, as a research assistant and now as a founder of a tutoring company. How has been the journey so far?
Heun: My journey has been very diverse and adventurous. Many people follow a path with a very few forks. I used my time to explore multiple facets of education, take on multiple roles, and travel through different cities. Even though I’m an educator, I’m always learning.
There is a general view that online tutoring is “not good” these days. According to you, how valid is this opinion?
It’s valid to an extent. Education has seen a rush of new companies trying to change the industry. There has been so much focus on technology that teaching has taken a back seat. In effect, online education, in general, hasn’t been very good. Crimson Scholars is trying to change this by creating a platform that is teacher and student centric. Our clients have been very happy with our online tutoring results.
Online teaching involves interacting with learners with diverse backgrounds. What can an online teacher do to understand his/her students better?
Understanding students online is no different from understanding students in person. You must observe and communicate constantly. If you see a student struggling, you need take time to present the concept differently, ask questions, and reassure your student.
Can you suggest some tips to build better student-teacher relationship in an online learning environment?
It’s easy to assume that a student-teacher relationship must be strictly professional, but that’s often a non-optimal way to approach learning. Teachers should talk to students about their interests and explore those interests with students. If a student likes soccer, think about creating a math lesson that revolves around soccer. Sharing interests is one way to develop trust and focus.
Could you tell us more about your upcoming webinar? What all can educators expect from this webinar?
The webinar will discuss some of the approaches that we use at Crimson Scholars. If you are interested in becoming a better teacher, join my class. I’ll teach you about creating learning opportunities, adjusting to student pace, and dealing with different types of learners.
Save Your Spot for Heun’s webinar, How To Be A Better Online Educator In This Tech Savvy World.
Can’t make it to the live webinar? No worries! Register for the webinar and you’ll get the free access to the live webinar recording.
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