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In order to make sure that your lesson is as smooth and enjoyable as possible, we ask that you follow these simple guidelines during your Distance Learning Lesson.

Student/Teacher Interaction:

  • Although videoconferencing might look like television, it differs in that it is a live two-way interaction. Students are expected to ask and answer questions, and participate in activities.
  • The classroom teacher should plan to take an active role in the lesson as well. It is helpful if he or she calls upon students to ask and answer questions at the Museum teacher’s request. The classroom teacher may also need to repeat the students’ questions and comments if students are far from the microphone.
  • If possible, it would be great if all students can been seen on camera at once during the lesson. Careful consideration of microphone placement so that all students may be clearly heard is also conducive to a successful lesson. However, please don’t move the microphone around during the lesson, unless it is of the handheld type, as it creates a loud and distracting noise that will be heard by the Museum teacher.

Making the Most of Our Time Together:

  • If possible, set up your videoconferencing environment to resemble your normal classroom environment. This simply maintains the kind of structure students are used to and creates a familiar environment that signifies learning. If your students are used to a non-traditional learning environment then you may try something different.
  • It might be helpful for students to have paper and pencil available for participation in various activities or for taking notes.
  • If students or the classroom teacher have not yet experienced a videoconference, it is a good idea to introduce them to the equipment prior to the lesson date. This allows everyone to get used to the camera, microphones, etc.
  • Familiarizing the students with the procedures you will use ahead of time will help the lesson go more smoothly.

Operating the Equipment:

  • Please be mindful of the Museum teacher when operating the camera. Moving the camera too quickly around the room, or zooming in and out on the students at a rapid pace can be disruptive to the lesson.
  • We have found that many older students (middle school and beyond) become quite shy or act out if the camera is focused too closely on them alone. This tends to hamper an effective dialogue between the students and the Museum staff.
  • Please turn off the Picture in Picture (PIP) feature while a lesson is in progress. We have found that students become easily distracted and/or self conscious when they can see themselves and the other students and this can effect the quality of the lesson.
  • If possible, please give the attached sheet to the school or district’s technology coordinator(s) so as to avoid any firewall issues during our scheduled time.

For more information, please contact Distance Learning by phone at 215-684-7333, by fax at 215-236-4063, or by e-mail at .

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