By Jacelyn Nesmith | Content Development Specialist on September 18, 2020 at 10:45 AM
Fall 2020 is gearing up to be a productive semester for teachers. Teachers are busy developing curriculum for students whether they are in the classroom, online or following a hybrid model. Teachers are seeking to create innovative and engaging lessons for their students from a distance.
One tool teachers are using to connect with students and to create a digital classroom is Microsoft Teams. In the last year, the use of Microsoft Teams has more than doubled. As of April, more than 75 million people use teams daily for online lectures, discussions and productive collaboration and more than 183,000 educational institutes are utilizing Microsoft Teams this semester.
Microsoft Teams has two subscriptions, one designed for educational settings and one for businesses. While both products can be used for educational purposes, the Teams for education includes features for teachers to post assignment, grades, files, feedback and offers a class notebook for students to use. By utilizing these features, Teams can easily serve as a learning management system (LMS). Additionally, students and teachers can access Microsoft Teams for free with a valid school email address.
Teams can serve as a standalone LMS for classes, or the online version can work alongside several different LMS products and applications already being used by a school. While iCEV does not directly integrate with Microsoft Teams at this time, teachers can still use iCEV with Microsoft Teams. Below are some suggestions for using Microsoft Teams with an iCEV subscription.
For each course, create a separate team and schedule a time to meet. All students in the group will receive a calendar invite and will be notified when the meeting begins. During the virtual meeting, teachers can control who can talk, present and chat during the lecture. Additionally, any participant can share their screen with the class to present materials.
Using iCEV’s lessons, teachers can foster a virtual class as if they were in the classroom. Teachers can have students prepare for each meeting by watching iCEV’s videos or reviewing PowerPoints. At the time of the meeting, students would be prepared for a discussion or a question and answer time. For example, teachers could share the iCEV matching vocabulary activity on their screens to help students review the content and reiterate any misunderstandings students had. Scheduled meetings are a great way for teachers to check for students understanding of concepts.
Each meeting can be recorded for absent students or for students who want to review the content. Once the recording ends, the video will automatically upload into the Microsoft Teams feed and be available to students. Having the recorded meeting could benefit special populations students. Through the recoding, all students can re-watch the video and take their time understanding the concepts.
Class Collaboration and Discussion
Students can chat their questions, answers or thoughts in the chat feature of Teams during a class meeting. Teachers can use the breakout room feature for students to work in smaller groups during the class.
Additionally, Microsoft Teams can be used to work on projects together, host discussions and ask their peers questions. Within a team, channels can be created to place focus on specific topics and students. For example, create a different channel to organize collaboration around different units, subjects or group projects. The teacher can be a member of each channel to monitor the Teams channel and help students. Additional channels can be made for student modifications, accommodations or extensions.
Students can open and edit files in a version of Word, PowerPoint, Excel and OneNote within the Teams program. When using the Microsoft applications in Teams, students can simultaneously work on an assignment or complete a group project. There may be limitations when using the Microsoft applications in Teams as they are not the desktop version; however many of the functionalities needed to complete documents, presentations and spreadsheets are available.
Microsoft Teams can also be used for class and socialization purposes. As students are staying at home, they may become bored or feel isolated. Through Teams, teachers can build a team to facilitate extracurricular activities and bring students together to socialize. Try incorporating fun, engaging and interactive activities or games into a lesson which will allow students to spend time with their peers.
For clubs, advisors can centralize communication within the team without needing each member’s personal contact information. Create calendars, sign-up sheets and polls online where the entire team can access them. Each group can be formal or informal by hosting virtual meetings and game nights with the organization.
For documents to be accessible to students, teachers can upload them to Microsoft Teams. Documents such as syllabi, handouts and school calendars can be shared for students to have all materials in one place.
iCEV’s slide presentations, video transcripts and PDFs can all be downloaded through a teacher’s iCEV subscription. Download these files and upload them into Microsoft Teams for students to access. Additionally, links to the interactive iCEV assignments or assessments can be shared in Microsoft Teams for students to access the online portal with their iCEV student login.
Microsoft Teams is designed to help members stay connected, engaged and increase productivity. More than 600 applications and tools are integrated with Microsoft Teams. Educational tools, including YouTube, Polls, Kahoot! and Quizlet can be directly integrated into Microsoft Teams. While iCEV is not an extension of Microsoft Teams, iCEV resources and lessons can be shared with students using the application.
If your school is not using Teams, iCEV integrates with multiple LMS and SSO providers, including Clever, Schoology, Google Classroom, Blackboard and Canvas. To learn how to integrate courses with these LMSs, view these tutorials.