As some of you may know from the “A Little About Me” section in the Fall I teach online for Southern Adventist University. Honestly, I do miss classroom teaching and hope to get back into one someday, but I still do find teaching online rewarding and it has given me experiences that I believe have made me a better teacher. But I digress….
Since learning styles are different I try (both online and in the classroom) to use a variety of methods to present the material. One thing that I did when in the classroom was to begin each class session with a video. Sometimes they were serious, sometimes comical, sometimes downright full of errors but I found it a great way to start the class. The class I taught was after lunch and while a darkened classroom might not have seemed the wisest place for students to go to after their midday meal, it allowed for everyone to quiet themselves, students arriving late did not interrupt lecture, and the videos were short enough to prevent anyone from nodding off. The video marked an absolute beginning to the class and was directly related to the lecture. No video was outrageous, but many students were curious what video I would show next.
I also use videos in my online class. This week as we begin the semester I have my students watch a video on why history is important (actually we watch two videos and read an essay). Here is the one assigned to my students for this week.