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A guide to online learning with National Youth Council

Due to Covid-19, online learning has become the norm and it is here to stay for long. Teaching online can be very different as compared to teaching in a classroom setting as trainers are unable to physically see if they are keeping their students or participants engaged, therefore it is important to stay updated with online teaching trends and change one’s teaching style to suit online lessons. These days, many youth projects also involve teaching online workshops and lessons, so in order to help these youths conduct a smooth lesson, the team at Make The Change has passed down their knowledge on online learning to the youths from the National Youth Council through a 4-hour online class.

An ice breaker session is a must to get started and comfortable with each other. With 27 participants, we started off with a short introduction on Padlet to understand their names, interests and what they would like to learn during the session. Right off the bat, the youths are active participants, even though they are shy to speak up, they responded with much enthusiasm on the Zoom chat function. Many of them even turned on their cameras to show their faces, which made the session even more engaging!

As some youths are still quite new to online teaching, we began the lesson by sharing with them the different types of learning as well as a guide to teaching online, including what are some tips they should take note of when creating their lesson slides. One important tip that we shared was creating content based on relevancy. Different groups of audience have different interests and values, therefore, it is important to design lesson plans based on what they would like to see. This increases the likelihood of them paying attention during an online lesson.

In order to get the youths familiarised with presenting, there were a series of mini activities planned out for them during the session. One of it was to create an individual presentation on how to have a great summer holiday, the key objective was to have an engaging introduction to a presentation so that it keeps participants looking forward to the lesson. It was interesting to see how the youths interpreted the activity differently; some shared how one can still have great fun during the Covid-19 situation, some shared which countries one can visit, others gave tips on how to have a great holiday. Soon, the session became much more engaging as they cheered for one another during the presentation.

Before we conducted the final activity to put what the youths have learnt into practice, we had a short Kahoot game. To get them fired up for a friendly competition, we mentioned that the winner of the game can walk away with a $10 Starbucks card. As cheers filled the Zoom chat, we could see that every one of them were putting in their best to actively participant in Kahoot. Despite it being a morning session, the energy level among the youths remained high and we continued on to the final activity. Each team had to craft out an online lesson teaching different groups of people what is media literacy. As Make The Change runs a media literacy workshop called Digital Arts For All, we could share with them our experiences of teaching people from different walks of lives, from seniors to young adults to children. Being well versed in this workshop, we could give youths advice on what type of content is suitable for different target groups. We are thankful that they were open to receiving new knowledge and were not afraid to ask questions.

The session ended off with each group presenting the skeleton of their lesson plan in regards to teaching media literacy and we were impressed with the different research and case studies that were presented! Many started off with interesting hooks to grasp the audience's attention; some shared scenario based stories, while others started with humorous myths that were debunked. All of them have done a great job putting what they have learnt into practice and they are definitely qualified to conduct their own online workshops and lessons! We hope that the youths from the National Youth Council enjoyed the session and were able to take away valuable insights and information! We had a lot of fun interacting with them and we look forward to future opportunities with NYC again.

Make The Change conducts learning programmes for youths from primary to tertiary level, some of our programmes include Social Entrepreneurship, Social Media for Good, as well as this workshop: How to conduct online learning! If you wish to know more about our learning programmes, you can contact us or visit our website for more information.


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