Volume 1: Reimagining Remote Teaching, Issue 7 | GCTC

Volume 1: Reimagining Remote Teaching, Issue 7

by Dr. Kerri McKenna - August 20, 2020

It is only Thursday morning and I have already heard one common theme when speaking with faculty: It is hard seeing a bunch of grey outlines on my screen! You are so very right. It is challenging to look at a bland, boring sea of grey and white on your collaborate screen while you are trying to be fun and engaging in your virtual classroom.

So, let us break up the visual equivalency of “Bueller, Bueller” and officially get rid of the monotonous grey and create profile pictures. Here are step-by-step directions you can share with your students when asking them to change their pictures!

Step 1: Open the magenta menu in the bottom right hand corner of the collaborate room.

Step 2: Click on the Gear Sign.

Step 3: Scroll to the top of the My Settings bar.

Step 4: Click on the grey silhouette.

Step 5: Drag / upload a picture from your computer OR take a picture with your webcam.

Step 6: Resize your picture as needed.

Step 7: Press Save

Step 8: Enjoy seeing a sea of faces on your computer instead of grey figures.

Creative Implementation

You can use your profile pictures in many ways – and here are just a few!

  1. Assign creating your profile picture as a homework assignment! This way, it is not optional. And it just might be one of the only HW assignments when everyone completes it!
  2. Let your students express their personalities through their pictures. Let them choose something other than their face so you get to know them – just make sure you remind them all pictures must be G rated!
  3. Have extra credit attached to a rotating picture that is themed based on your current classroom content. Studying the cardiovascular system in A & P? Have them use pictures of different parts of the system. Discussing brakes in Auto? Use pictures and diagrams of the mechanical components of the vehicle. Studying a math concept? Find pictures of sample problems associated with the topic. Make them go out each week and find something with directly connects to your current content! And, when they do, offer an extra credit point here or there for their efforts.
  4. Plant your Easter eggs through profile pictures. Email one student a week and ask him or her to be the Easter egg profile picture for the day and the other students in class will search for it.
  5. Have students partner up for Icon Vocabulary. Have one student put a vocabulary word as their profile picture, and another student put the definition in theirs. Allow your students to match the profiles together to review content. This can be adjusted for just about anything as a great review or opening activity for students!

I am sure there are plenty more creative ways you can implement the use of profile pictures – so make sure you share them with your peers! And, especially, with the Teaching & Learning Center so I can add them to our collective database!