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7 Activities to improve online class participation rates

There are many types of students in online classes. Some of them will flourish and others need help to come out of their shells. To encourage students to participate in online classes, teachers need to give them opportunities and create the right environment. Here are seven activities to achieve that:

  1. Rapid icebreakers

    The goal is for all students to participate, no matter how small the interaction. Polls, Draw your mood or Never have I ever can be fitted into a five-minute slot and are fun for everyone.

  2. Interactive chats

    Students are encouraged to raise their hands whenever they have a question or use emojis to express their understanding of a concept. This kind of chat is easier to manage with a teaching assistant (TA), but you can do it yourself for shorter Q&A activities.

  3. Online show and tell

    Students get to be the instructor and they can make the activity as interesting as they like through videos, presentations or collages. You can also gamify the process and make it even more interesting.

  4. Flipped classroom

    Teachers find it easier to teach through videos or written content that students can access anytime. After going through those materials, synchronous activities require student participation, raising engagement levels.

  5. Peer feedback

    In this instance, students work on an assignment (e.g. write a short essay), and another student gives feedback on their work. This enhances critical thinking skills and makes them come up with great ideas for improvement.

  6. Online tag game

    This fun game is just as useful for the virtual classroom. Teachers give a prompt and students take turns answering that question. It works well for any subject type and it encourages students to pay attention.

  7. Online brainstorming

    During online brainstorming, students use collaboration tools to come up with ideas, research or solve problems. You can switch between breakout rooms to make sure everyone is participating.

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