5 Online Teaching Tools You Should Have

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With education moving online, more and more instructors are hosting virtual lectures with students tuning in all over the world. This is democratizing learning and teaching globally, so that anyone with internet access can get a quality education. For teachers, however, it's an entirely new ballgame, with thousands of educational tools and resources to choose from. In this guide, we've shared five essential online teaching tools to build an effective virtual curriculum and stay connected with your students. 
 

Educational Network

To harness the best practices in online teaching, you need a great network that serves as a digital hub and brings students and teachers together. Platforms like Edmodo allow teachers to share lesson materials, create study groups, and keep in touch with parents, all under one roof. Meanwhile, educational tools like TED-Ed let students create their own TED talks, or watch a video-based lesson series that you've created. There's no shortage of educational platforms and social networks online, but it's important to research the best options and test out a few before committing.     
 

Virtual Whiteboard 

The best software for online teaching brings tangible tools from the classroom into the digital world. So it's no surprise that the whiteboard has been digitized as well. Just like a classic whiteboard, the virtual version allows you to share drawings and concepts with students, and you can upload documents for everyone to use too. You can decide who is allowed to edit the whiteboard, so that students can answer questions or contribute to a list. And when the lesson is over, the entire session can be stored for later review. There are a wide variety of virtual whiteboards online, but IDroo and AWW are popular options. 
 

Video Chat

Online teaching tools don't always have to be teacher-specific. In the case of video chat, Skype and Google Hangouts are excellent options for connecting with other instructors, hosting office hours, and checking in with parents. These amazing tools are mostly free to use, and it's easy to share your screen with everyone on the call. You can also distribute class materials while hosting an impromptu lecture or meeting. And if you have the budget, the best webcam for online teaching (or executives working remotely) is the Yamaha CS-700 – an all-in-one system that combines an ultra-wide angle camera, a beamforming mic, and 4 speaker elements in one streamlined device. The latter is particularly important for teaching, because research shows that learning starts with quality audio
 

Homework Tool

The best practices in online teaching are all about facilitating collaboration, so that students feel connected to the subject matter (and each other). Students who learn from home might think they can weasel their way out of homework, but online teaching tools have caught up fast. We recommend simplifying the process with a collaboration tool like Google Docs or Squid – a note-taking app that allows teachers to quickly mark up an assignment and send it back. 

 

Plagiarism Checker

No online course would be complete without a plagiarism tool running in the background, so that students don't get complacent and start copying from Wikipedia. Services like Turnitin can simplify the process, while also providing actionable feedback to improve student writing skills. Once students know that their work is being analyzed by a high-tech algorithm, they'll think twice about pulling paragraphs from another source.  

At Yamaha, we believe strongly in education. And good audio helps students learn, whether they're studying in-person or online. When teachers combine some video conferencing software with a high-quality Bluetooth speakerphone like the YVC-200, the whole class can feel like they're in the same room. That's why we're offering our Dean's List Discount Program, which provides 10% off UC products and 20% off PRO products for all qualified institutions. Click here to explore Yamaha UC's full line of education-friendly products and transform your teaching setup.