How to Conduct a Good Online Small Group Class

Today, I am going to talk about how to conduct a good online small group class in three aspects: preparations, in-class interaction, and after class.


· What to prepare before online class? (preparations)

· How to be interactive in the class (in-class interaction)

· What to do after class? (after class)




First, preparation. What to prepare before an online class?

One of main goals of online class is to create an active and harmonious class atmosphere. Teachers and students can grow together by learning from each other in a pleasant atmosphere.


To make an active and harmonious class atmosphere, get these ready:


- Professional mindset: Be passionate and thoughtful. Making the progress is always what parents expect from online tutoring classes. In this sense, students’ change in learning attitude is the core to meet the parents’ expectations.


- Student mindset: Students should set their own goal. Students can achieve the progress by competing and cooperating with each other in groups. The social skill is the strong motivation for students to keep learning and growing themselves.


- Knowledge: Teacher’s preparedness is necessary to give lessons, to interact with students, and to help out students with problems instantly.


- Technical Support: First, fast Internet access is indispensable in an online class environment. Sometimes teachers neglect the importance of student’s Wi-Fi speed, but connection problems really happen. Thus, class managers should check every user’s connected environment in advance. Secondly, teachers should adapt themselves to online circumstances. Online teaching environments are different from classroom teaching.To overcome some limitations of online teaching circumstances, teachers should be well-informed of online tools and develop different teaching methods from those used in regular classroom settings.


Teaching environment


Having an excellent teaching environment is vital to effective teaching. Teaching environments imply many things but here it will focus more on a physical and technical environment.


1) Physical

Make your classroom look nice. Put bright and soft light on. Keep the background clean and tidy. Wear decent clothes even though you do not meet students in person. Also, keep the class disciplines in mind as shown below.




2) Classroom layout

EDB board is an easy teaching tool. Users can easily save and import memos through this board. So teachers can prepare teaching materials on EDB board before class starts and import them anytime they need.


EDB board

Teachers can incorporate fun class games, utilizing EDB’s drawing function, into the lesson, which can lift students’ motivation and participation!


These are some tips to keep in mind:


1. Teaching + Marketing Teachers are not just teaching but also representing their company. It is highly recommended to wear clothes with the company logo and contain the logo on the background because this looks more professional.


2. Prepare lesson content

One of the important considerations for lessons you teach is that students come from different academic levels and interests. Students will not learn in the same way. Thus teachers should provide differential lessons to different groups.

Creating a good atmosphere at the beginning a class with a warm-up can help to make your students feel happy and engaged ready to learn. This is a good intro to learning new or reviewing vocabulary.


3. Prepare your devices

Teachers and students should check if the camera is properly adjusted. It is ideal to leave a triangle-shaped space between head to shoulder on the screen.



Check if the devices are properly adjusted

4. Differential lessons

When teaching mixed ability students, it may be not easy to provide differential lessons. To help with this, teachers will need to group students with similar levels. Consider the diversity and needs of your students and adapt different teaching styles and content.


5. When class begins

It is important to Hold students’ attention in 6 minutes! This can be done by dragging a student’s screen in the middle or calling a student’s name. At the same time, teachers can make use of other varieties of teaching tools to raise student’s participation.



Hold students’ attention in 6 minutes!

6. Interaction


1) Interaction on EDB board:

EDB board enables students to complete class activities by freely manipulating online tools. Students can learn much more through interacting online than just reading a book.


2) Utilizing tools: ClassIn provides many tools such as, quiz games, a stopwatch, and a dice, to help students’ with learning. These tools facilitate to foster an active learning environment as if they are in an actual classroom.



ClassIn provides many tools such as quiz games, a stopwatch, and a dice

7. Time Distribution


A Teacher’s role is very important in a participation-oriented class. Let’s take our oral English course as an example. The student’s participation possesses 50% to 80% of the whole class running time. Here, the teacher’s role is to enable the students to show their willingness and set their own goal, by actively interacting with students. One of the strengths of a small group class is that the class is comprised of different students, in which students can learn from each other. Of course, on the basis of each student’s demonstrated ability, teachers should keep assessing students in order to use different teaching methods.


Second, interaction. How to be interactive in class?

1. Uploading student’s notes

Students can upload their test or wrong answer notes to the online cloud or upload them by scanning the QR code. By doing this, teachers can check student’s problems and go over their weaknesses. This will be helpful for students to get prepared before going into the next level.


2. Dragging screen

Basically, teachers use PPT/PDF/EDB formats in class. Teachers can drag their student’s screens, or teaching materials displayed, into the middle of the entire screen. They can write on the EDB board, just like on a blackboard. On top of it, teachers can drag their student’s screen into the middle and ask to make a speech or take a quiz.


3. Group game

Teachers can split the teams and draw a line to indicate it. Students can utilize EDB to follow the teacher’s instructions or to answer the question.



Group games by utilizing EDB

4. Make a speech and presentation

There are several ways to let students make an individual speech. A student can be chosen by using the dice or pushing buzzer. Also, teachers can designate one by double-clicking a student’s screen. When students make a speech, teachers can set a stopwatch to control the class time.


5. Preparation assessment/ Wrap-up Quiz

Teachers can offer multiple-choice questions or short answer questions to evaluate students. Multiple-choice questions can be taken on a PPT. Short answer questions can be answered on the small blackboard.



Students can use small blackboard to answer questions

6. Cooperation

Students can cooperate with each other and even with teachers. Online group classes will open an opportunity to improve cooperation and communication skills through various class interactions.


7. Share

EDB board is idealized to share ideas and questions! Students can share anything they want.


Third, after class. What to do after class?

1. Ensure students to do homework.

Homework is the best way to do revision. Ask and strongly encourage students to complete their homework after the class, explaining the importance of homework.


2. Study Progress Report

For students whose academic results are relatively poor, send supplementary study materials. For students whose academic results are excellent, send advanced study materials. For students who have perfectly completed homework, send a letter with a compliment. After a course is completed, send a study report to parents.


3. Online Counseling

Teachers can communicate with parents with regard to student’s academic performance on request.



Related Resources



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*ClassIn is a leading edtech company that provides a one-stop solution for digital learning.


ClassIn software enables interactive classrooms, in-school social app, lesson scheduling, homework management, and school management dashboard, which start free and scale up to meet our customers' needs at any stage of teaching. Today, thousands of schools and institutions around the world benefit from ClassIn's powerful and easy-to-use tools to teach online and offline.