How to Engage Students in Zoom and Teach Effectively at a Distance

How to Engage Students in Zoom and Teach Effectively at a Distance

How to Engage Students in Zoom and Teach Effectively at a Distance

Aaron Johnson Shares His Way to Engage Students Even at a Distance

Many of us are learning to traverse between online and in-person learning environments. Our guest Aaron Johnson, author of Online Teaching with Zoom, shares with us how to better engage students through Zoom, so we can all teach effectively at a distance.

Sponsor: GoGuardian The State of Engagement Report 2020 has valuable classroom research and information on distance learning best practices. This must-read report is funded by GoGuardian and includes a meta-analysis of best practices in engaging distance learning. We can improve engagement with our students – no matter where they are learning. Thank you GoGuardian for sponsoring this podcast and the report. Download the State of Engagement Report 2020 now!

Listen to Aaron Johnson on Engaging Students through Zoom


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Aaron Johnson – Bio As Submitted

Aaron Johnson

Aaron Johnson is Associate Dean of Educational Technology at Denver Seminary, a graduate school in Littleton, Colorado. As a veteran online educator, Mr. Johnson's goal is to support teachers transitioning to the online classroom and those who want to improve their teaching skills.

His books have become go-to resources for colleges, universities, and K-12 school districts. Their to-the-point style and practical ideas make them easy to read and immediately applicable. Readers describe the series as “useful,” “helpful,” “applicable,” “reassuring,” and “accessible.”

His background includes work as a junior high and high school teacher, instructional designer, and faculty developer. During the initial days of COVID, Mr. Johnson was a sought-after aid to institutions that needed help transitioning their faculty to online delivery.



Disclosure of Material Connection: This is a “sponsored podcast episode.” The company who sponsored it compensated me via cash payment, gift, or something else of value to include a reference to their product. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I believe will be good for my readers and are from companies I can recommend. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
All opinions on this show are my own and those of my guests on the show and are not necessarily endorsed by the show's sponsor.

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Vicki Davis

Vicki Davis is a full-time classroom teacher and IT Director in Georgia, USA. She is Mom of three, wife of one, and loves talking about the wise, transformational use of technology for teaching and doing good in the world. She hosts the 10 Minute Teacher Podcast which interviews teachers around the world about remarkable classroom practices to inspire and help teachers. Vicki focuses on what unites us -- a quest for truly remarkable life-changing teaching and learning. The goal of her work is to provide actionable, encouraging, relevant ideas for teachers that are grounded in the truth and shared with love. Vicki has been teaching since 2002 and blogging since 2005. Vicki has spoken around the world to inspire and help teachers reach their students. She is passionate about helping every child find purpose, passion, and meaning in life with a lifelong commitment to the joy and responsibility of learning. If you talk to Vicki for very long, she will encourage you to "Relate to Educate" or "innovate like a turtle" or to be "a remarkable teacher." She loves to talk to teachers who love their students and are trying to do their best. Twitter is her favorite place to share and she loves to make homemade sourdough bread and cinnamon rolls and enjoys running half marathons with her sisters. You can usually find her laughing with her students or digging into a book.

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Sherley Serrano March 27, 2021 - 8:04 pm

Hello, I am a preschool teacher and mother of a Junior in High School and I am so glad you speak about the videos. I know that for my age group the requirement of videos is needed. The interaction is very engaging and on a short span of 15 minutes or so. Yet my daughter’s class has very few children actively engaged and most of their videos are off for a minimum of 45 minutes. The shared information is through lectures and I know my daughter is so bored. I will actually share this blog with them. I think your clear assistance and positive engagement idea will be great for them. Thank you :)

magarth gooden July 21, 2021 - 12:00 am

I agree with you Sherley. it has been hectic for me throughout this pandemic too and to keep my students focused.

Magarth Gooden July 20, 2021 - 9:29 pm

Dr. Johnson I can relate as I teach “black boxes” and “display pictures” too. Jig-saw is a good idea to keep my grade 3 students active and engaged. I think one of the many reasons why half of my class does not show their camera is because of their home setting, and I cannot be hard on them for that. I definitely will use the jig-saw as it allows them freedom to communicate and cooperate and be active in their own learning. Hence minimizing or eradicating time spent on several social medias; which distract them from the lesson.


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Vicki Davis writes The Cool Cat Teacher Blog for classroom teachers everywhere