DAY 65 – DAS NEWS – Virtual Classroom Management

DAY 65 – VIRTUAL CLASSROOM MANAGEMENT – ONLINE! #CircuitBreaker #EmbraceDyslexia


Video conferencing is the primary component of a SPED online lesson that facilitates interaction with the clients. Running a smooth video conference session (Zoom or any other platform) will not necessarily ensure or equate that session to be an effective virtual classroom delivery.

Lesson designing, choosing an effective platform to deliver the lesson, selecting a bunch of tech tools to facilitate the lesson delivery, and integrating all of them together to deliver a meaningful online lesson to the kids will certainly ensure that an educational therapist (EdT) meets the lesson objectives and learning goals of his or her lesson.

We provide individual lessons on a fixed schedule over a period of time. These virtual lessons will eventually contribute towards a holistic learning experience where the kids will be able to acquire new information and skills. They will be able to use these two components – new information and skills – to find innovative ways of skill-application and practice which will eventually subscribe to knowledge-sharing.

Community of Inquiry – CoI – (Garrison, Anderson, & Archer, 2000) is a theoretical framework that brings in three independent elements – social presence, cognitive presence, and teaching presence – together when delivering a virtual education experience. This conceptual framework facilitates EdTs to help strike a balance between these three attributes so that the kids could be kept socially engaged and not socially isolated while interacting with the content in the virtual classroom.

Unlike in a face-to-face class, learner engagement during a virtual lesson is a different landscape altogether. When the same set of tech tools are engaged over a period of time, learners can easily get disengaged with the lesson material. This will, in turn, make them multi-task. For example, a learner can stop the video of the platform and engage himself/herself in an activity of his/her choice while keeping the lesson running in the background and answering a few questions occasionally. This is more common with upper primary and secondary students. Whereas, the lower primary kids will mute the audio and/or stop the video, exit the video conferencing platform, and ask their parents to set it up for them from scratch.

EdTs have less control over virtual environments of their kids. There is only one way out to bring the attention of the kids back to learning materials. We should re-purpose our existing tech tools or introduce new tools to make a comeback from disengagement to engagement. Some tech tools (e.g. EDpuzzle, Nearpod) help determine student engagement by measuring student participation and allowing the EdTs and kids to progress part by part in a lesson and get the kids to complete one assignment before proceeding to the other.

Moreover, in a differentiated learning environment, an EdT could personalise both the lesson and the tech tool(s).

The learning needs of our kids will change over time, Therefore, reviewing the learning goals constantly and determining the technological needs of kids on a regular basis will certainly help both the kids and the EdTs. In summary, reviewing and revisiting our learning goals and tech tools as an ongoing process during a learning journey will certainly help the kids to make an energetic comeback to their lessons.  


Garrison, D. R., Anderson, T., & Archer, W. (2000). Critical inquiry in a text-based environment: Computer conferencing in higher education model.


By Mohamed Samunn
Senior Education Therapist & Senior Specialist Tutor
DAS International Services

Read the article here


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