Video Conferencing Tips for Teachers
The following is a short list of things that Teachers can do before, during and after a
video conference in order to make the program relevant for both the students and
classroom teacher. Please note ideas for this piece came from two presentations at the
Keystone Conference 2005 in Indianapolis, IN from Mr. Doug Meyer, CILC and Ms.
Anne Thorp, Ottawa (MI) Area Intermediate School District.
Before the Conference:
The following are some questions you the classroom teacher should ask the content
provider before the video conference.
1. Have the content provider explain the content details to you and how they are
proposing to do the program?
2. Ask if the program content is aligned to the National standards (Minimum) and
your state standards ideally?
3. Does the content provider have any Pre and Post activities for the program?
4. How will the content provider make the program interactive and engage your
5. What is the cost of the program and what do you get for that cost?
6. Discuss with the content provider how you as the classroom teacher will interact
with them before, during and after the program.
Preparing your Students:
The more students participate in video conferences the more they will get out of the
experience and the better they will behave during it. Below are some tips in helping your
students prepare for the video conference experience.
1. Prepare students beforehand for what is about to happen during the video
2. Have the camera on for several days prior to the conference so students will get
comfortable with the camera.
3. Have students practice speaking loudly and clearly when asking or answering
4. Have students prepare a list of questions to ask the content provider.
5. Ask your students to complete the following statements during the video
a. I wonder…
b. This reminds me of…
c. I agree with ____ because…
d. I disagree with ___ because…
e. This is confusing to me because…
6. While in the program, ask your students to list 3 to 5 ideas they feel are the most
important. After the program have each student discuss their key ideas with a
partner. Have one person from each group write down their key ideas on the
Before any video conference you should always test your unit to make sure it is
After the Conference--Time for Reflection:
After each video conferencing program Teachers should take a few minutes to reflect on
what happened and on what could be improved; below are some questions to stimulate
1. Did this program impact the knowledge of my students?
2. Did this program address identified academic standards?
3. Did the program differentiate (Change) for different student needs?
4. Were my students actively engaged? If not why not?
5. Did the program guide and activities work? If not why?
6. How would you have refined them?
7. Document your thoughts for future reference.
A final thought:
Video conferences are supposed to be fun and engaging for both the student and the
classroom teacher. However Teachers you are still responsible for what goes on in your
classroom and it’s entirely appropriate for you to ask questions of the content provider
before the program and to be involved with your class during the program. Please don’t
sit back and make the content provider do all the work, you know your students the best
and how they respond in given situations, use that knowledge and work with your content
provider to make each video conference an entertaining and meaningful educational