Communication exists in many formats. In the classroom, the written and the spoken word are the most common, regardless of the nature of the classroom environment. In the physical classroom (the 'brick and mortar' environment), tone of voice, nonverbal cues, and other sensory input affects the learning process. In the virtual - or online - classroom, the instructor can weave creative methods into his or her delivery to offer that 'other sensory input.'
Throughout this class, our family of students (who happen to be instructors as well) were tasked with identifying and introducing creative measures into the virtual classroom to enhance this learning process. Visual additions such as images and videos added motion and color; audio clips added personality and voice inflection; and the opportunity for trial, error, and self-reflection – all while meeting due dates and deadlines – mirrored the experiences of the students we all teach.
I so appreciate the ability to bring color and personality into the classroom! What a difference it made to me – as the student; and what an impact I will have – as the instructor!