Communicate Reflection

Standard C:The online teacher plans, designs, and incorporates strategies to encourage active learning, application, interaction, participation, and collaboration in the online environment.
Standard D:The online teacher promotes student success through clear expectations, prompt responses, and regular feedback.

Standard E: The online teacher models, guides, and encourages legal, ethical, and safe behavior related to technology use.

Standard J: The online teacher interacts in a professional, effective manner with colleagues, parents, and other members of the community to support students’ success.

Standard K: The online teacher arranges media and content to help students and teachers transfer knowledge most effectively in the online environment.

The Communicate module prepare me to meet each standard listed above in various ways.  For example, by incorporating different ways to give feedback I encourage active learning as well as arranging media to help students transfer knowledge most effectively (Standards C and K) This can be found at

In the TOOL program, I learned how to clearly, efficiently, and effectively communicate while respecting communication laws (Standard E) which can be found here:

I learned how to give prompt and regular feedback (Standard D) as shown here and here

I learned to identify the stakeholders that I need to communicate with and explored different methods to best facilitate that communication such as emails, smore newsletters, and Flipsnack (Standard J) as shown here

I also explored differentiating communication for students not only in giving general information but also in providing different types of feedback (

There are so many ways to communicate effectively.  It is definitely not a one size fits all.

The most beneficial lesson to me was the differentiation lesson.  While online learning gives students some kind of differentiation in pace it can be difficult to think outside the box.  I enjoyed exploring how to communicate in different ways.

I plan to use Smores to help differentiate communication as well as FlipSnack to differentiate presentation of information to students.

Note: In reviewing this capstone, please be sure to click on “Older Posts” to view all the communicate posts.

Communicate 4.3.1 – The Synchronous Session Quest

The online world can seem very isolated to students.  Synchronous sessions enables students to feel connected.   During synchronous sessions students are able to interact with their teacher and peers in real time using the chat box, using the microphone on their computer or even writing on the virtual whiteboard.

Synchronous sessions develop a sense of community or can help to explain or enhance coursework.  The debate on how to effectively use synchronous sessions continues.  Some teachers believe that having an open office is sufficient since the coursework is already laid out with videos while others propose mini-lessons to make the sessions worth while and increase attendance.

To have a great synchronous session the best advice is to plan sessions that are concise, arrive early, have a back up plan in case you loose internet connection and remember to facilitate interaction.

Communicate 4.2.3 – Discussions Quest

discussion of the day

Discussion forums serve as a way to build community in the online classroom.
Discussion forums function as a teaching tool because they can also serve as a way to challenge student thinking by asking more probing questions.
Discussion forums are used effectively when there are guidelines are clearly laid out and are in place. Some of the best practices for facilitating forums online include the following: responding to the first thread of all students, integrate multimedia in your responses such as audio or video links, providing additional resources for further study.

Communicate 4.2.2 Digital Feedback

Using Stamps to Enhance Feedback

trythisOne digital resource is to use a visual aid such as this stamp to get students attention to important feedback.  In mathematics there are several ways to do a problem so this “Try This” image can be used to illustrate a new method.


Using Videos

Creating a quick video can be helpful to helping students figure out where they went wrong on completing a problem:

Audio Feedback

This link is an example of audio feedback:

Sending audio feedback can help students to feel more connected to the teacher.

Communicate 4.2.1 – Feedback Quest




Method for Assessing Student Work

A method for assessing student work would include providing the correct answer to each question; however, a more effective method for feedback is to look at the student’s work and find out at which point is the student making the mistake, then providing appropriate feedback to help them correct it.

Communicate 4.1.1 Evaluation Methods and Communication Practices

How do communication practices in the online environment correlate to effective feedback?

Communication practices in the online environment is essential to effective feedback.  You cannot give effective feedback unless you are communicating with your students.

Why is authentic feedback important for online learners?

There is a direct correlation, the more you communicate with your students, the better they will do.

In what ways might an instructor enrich a student’s online experience through feedback?

An instructor may enrich a student’s online experience through feedback by giving timely and specific feedback to help the student improve.  In so doing, this helps the student to not feel alone and gives a sense of community in an environment that can seem very isolated.

Communicate 3.2.2 Differentiation

applesflipped1Differentiated communication is essential for students since some students are visual while others are auditory learners.  By differentiating communication, teachers can be sure that they are reaching every learning style.

Communication can be differentiated in four different ways:

Two examples of differentiating presentation include Prezi and FlipSnack.  You can view my example of FlipSnack by clicking here:

Two examples of differentiating using images, audio and video tools include GoAnimate and Voki.  I created an example of differentiated communication using  Voki.  To view click here:

Instruction can also be differentiated.  By using programs such as Creately  or Piktochart teachers can create graphic organization charts to help students who need more assistance in understanding a topic.

Finally you can have your students collaborate in a variety of ways.  Some examples include Padlet and LiveBinders.  LiveBinders allows teachers and students to share information and add to it while Padlet is like an interactive bulletin board where students actually get to post to it.  Here is one way I used Padlet for EOC Review:

For more tips and tricks go to 

Communicate 3.2.1 The Newsletter

Photo from

Three highly effective methods for communicating with stakeholders include using a Smore, FlipSnack and ThingLink.  Below is an example of each method.


Smores can be used as a newsletter to communicate with parents, students, and other stakeholders.  Here is an example of a smore that was used to communicate with parents to help them “coach” their child to success: .


FlipSnack is a way to convert several files into a simple virtual book.  This is ideal for communicating large amounts of information.  I used my FlipSnack to welcome students to my classroom:


According to their website “ThingLink is the leading platform for creating interactive images and videos for web, social, advertising, and educational channels.”  This is an awesome way to share information in an interesting way.  I can see myself using this for the virtual classroom bulletin board.  In this artifact I used ThingLink to create an End of Semester bulletin board.  Click here to view:

Communicate 3.1.2 News

As an online instructor, I plan to incorporate news items and announcements on a weekly basis to inform students of our weekly chat sessions and due dates. I would use to create customized images for my classroom.

Other resources I would reference to format news items include Animoto to create simple videos from pictures, SnagIt to create quick videos to show how to navigate or complete a problem as well as animation factory.  There are so many other tools to use, is a good website to continue to reference.

The following is an example of a News Item that I created for my students to remind them about our synchronous sessions entitled: Live Learning Lounge