We’ve all been there. You’re a participant in a webinar and just as the facilitator starts to give instructions for an activity your kid starts demanding more cookies, or your dog starts demanding more cookies, or you were in the kitchen getting more cookies. You missed the instructions and now people are headed to breakout rooms and you don’t know what’s going on!
Unsurprisingly, this happens to our students too (even when there are no cookies involved). A quick, easy way to fix this problem is to have structures in place to ensure everyone knows the prompt before an engagement activity. Consider saying the instructions out loud, having them up on a slide, including them in a Google doc used for group responses, and putting them in the Zoom chat. By using the principles of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and giving our students multiple ways to engage with the instructions, we’re creating learning environments that best fit our students’ needs.
I learned about this tip from the presentation “Bringing an Inclusive Mindset to your Teaching” by Kelly Hogan and Viji Sathy (University of North Carolina Chapel Hill) put on by the Center for Integration of Research, Teaching, and Learning (CIRTL). Learn more about CIRTL@IUB and their upcoming events.