Online teaching has become a part of life for students and teachers at all levels since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Adapting to an unconventional teaching environment has been a challenge for everyone and, for this reason, in this Tecvideos article we want to gather some online teaching tools that facilitate the work of teachers and that help prepare more dynamic sessions for students from home.
In addition to using free online programs, apps, and websites to enhance your e-learning experience, you can also invest in equipment that will help you mimic the classroom experience. We will explore many options here, so keep reading and discover how to give live online classes in the best way.
Wacom Intuos S Tablet
If you want to replicate the experience of writing on a blackboard and teach classes in real time As if you were in a classroom, one of the best options to achieve this is by using a drawing tablet. The wacom tablets they are popular with designers for their precision in illustrating, but can also be used for writing, presentations and simple drawings while you are explaining a topic or subject.
As the pandemic has taken us all by surprise, you may not have much space at home to teach or work. For this reason, in this case we suggest the Wacom Intuos S series, a small, very light tablet with an affordable price compared to other tablets on the market. you will find it by around 60-70 euros.
To configure it, all you have to do is connect it to your computer, install the drivers it suggests and start writing with the pen as if it were a blackboard. For this, you can use some free online whiteboard applications that we will show you later.
Apps for teaching online – online whiteboards
Once we have our own tablet to use as a whiteboard, all that remains is to find the best online whiteboard programs to be able to write on them freely and share the screen with the members of a video call. There are many options, some paid and some free, but we guarantee that with the free applications you will have everything you need to give a clear and precise class as if you were in front of a blackboard.
- Microsoft Whiteboard: It is one of the most popular whiteboard software and you can easily find it in the Windows app store. It allows you to add images, highlight words, write and draw with markers of different thickness and colors.
- google-jamboard: is Google’s alternative to digital whiteboards. Students will also be able to participate in the whiteboard, as it is collaborative and everyone can access it from wherever they are.
- Mural: Just like jamboard, Mural is a collaborative whiteboard where multiple members can participate at the same time. You can add figures, diagrams, notes and more for free.
Logitech MX Keys Keyboard
We keep thinking about saving space and building a workplace practical, comfortable and elegant. For this reason, it is a good idea to invest in a smaller and more resistant keyboard that you can also easily transport to other places. This is the case of the MX Keys keyboard from Logitech’s Master Series series, a brand known for offering good quality hardware at affordable prices.
The MX Keys keyboard is not only small, it is also made with a metal plate that gives it solidity and resistance. It also has concave keys and backlighting to make the more comfortable and precise writing.
In addition to the keyboard, you can also buy the mouse from the same series, or buy others from Logitech that will also be of good quality.
Blue Snowball iCE Microphone
Another super useful tool for giving online classes is a good USB microphone, such as the Blue Snowball iCE certified by Skype. With this microphone you can achieve a high quality sound for teaching live and for recording, much clearer and cleaner than what is achieved with the microphone that is built into the computer. It does this thanks to being powered by a custom cardioid condenser capsule.
Using this microphone to give online classes is very simple, you just have to mount it on its adjustable stand and connect the USB cable to your computer. It’s that easy to achieve transparent sound for recordings and video calls for your classes and tutorials.
Blue Yeti Nano Microphone
Blue Yeti microphones are very popular among youtubers and streamers for its small size, its affordable price and its audio quality. If you are not looking for a very professional microphone, but want improve audio quality To keep your students’ attention, this condenser microphone is a very good choice.
Even if the members of a video call are not all the time looking at the screen, they will always be listening. Therefore, we would say that having a good microphone is even more important than having a good camera when it comes to broadcasting or teaching.
Just like keyboard and tablet, this microphone will be perfect for small or limited work environments. You will only have to connect it via USB and you can start using it.
C505 HD Webcam
In addition to the tools seen so far, it is also necessary to mention the best webcams to teach online. For example, it is highly recommended to use a webcam such as the Logitech C505HDsince it offers quality and sharp video with a widescreen format and HD 720p/30 fps resolution and many more benefits.
This webcam also includes a microphone with a range of up to three meters away that picks up sound clearly and also includes a universal clip and a 2 meter USB-A cable, which will make it easier for you to set up the recording area as you see fit. Another point in favor is that this webcam has automatic lighting correctionso the camera adjusts itself to the lighting of the place where you are recording.
Brio Ultra HD 4K Webcam
Good audio and video quality can make all the difference when it comes to capturing the attention of our listeners, whether they are students or not. Although we believe that a good sound is more important than a good image, if you have the possibility to improve the video, an excellent alternative is the logitech webcams.
This particular camera is designed to stream in very good resolution even in low light and you will be able to stream at 60fps (at 1080p) smoothly. In 4K, you will be able to stream at 30fps.
You can find this camera for around 250-150 euros on Amazon, but if you prefer to opt for a cheaper option, the Logitech C920 HD Pro Webcaman alternative that will also be perfect for live streaming.
Programs for teaching online – video conferences and calls
With a camera and microphone purchased, it is a good idea to be clear about what the best apps to make video calls. Having a stable connection that allows many students to connect at the same time is key before teaching online. Some of the most used are:
- google-meet– Your students will only need a Google account to join calls with up to 100 concurrent participants for free.
- zoom: one of the most popular tools during the pandemic. It has a free version in which you can make calls with up to 100 participants for 40 minutes.
- jitsi: This is a completely free video call application where you can communicate with up to 75 people at the same time. Its quality is not as good as the previous ones, but if you do not have too many students in the call it will work optimally.
- Skype: We cannot leave aside one of the oldest video calling apps. Today, Skype allows free calls of up to 50 people.
- Microsoft Teams: Although Skype is also from Microsoft, this application is also designed for companies and work teams. For free you can have 300 participants in the calls.
Other programs to teach online
The great challenge of online teaching is given, in part, by the lack of direct interaction with students. Therefore, it is important to find new ways to encourage participation in class, as well as new ways to evaluate and organize the content of the subject. Here we leave you other interesting applications that will surely help you in your search for the best tools for teaching online:
- Kahoot!: with Kahoot! You can create questionnaires of any subject.
- socrative: allows you to create activities, homework and evaluation models in a didactic way for the mobile.
- Prezi: With Prezi you can make attractive and very dynamic presentations with little effort thanks to its wide variety of templates and animations.
- Google Classroom: It is a platform developed by Google and designed to create, organize and manage the content of a subject. In addition, it allows grading, sending tasks and receiving them in a simple and synchronized way through different applications and platforms.
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