It’s American Education Week – a time to raise public awareness of the importance of education and to highlight the great work teachers across the nation are doing in the classroom every day. And what better way for us to do this than to, once again, recognize the outstanding work done by Kristin Kipp, an online English teacher for the Jefferson County 21st Century Virtual Academy in Colorado and the SREB 2011 National Online K-12 Teacher of Year! We had the opportunity to sit down with Kristin to hear her secrets for success in online teaching and learning, and to discuss the most effective ways to engage online students.

Kristin says the key to a successful online class is to think about the course through three lenses:

1. Students’ interaction with course content
The course content needs to be clearly organized and should include a mix of assignments that require critical thinking, engagement and student choice.
2. Students’ interaction with the teacher
There needs to be a strong student-teacher relationship, where they know you and you know their story – who they are, what’s important to them and their unique skill set.
3. Students’ interaction with each other
Students need to understand that even though it’s an online environment, it’s important to interact with each other and challenge one another through blogs, wikis and discussion posts.

Check out Kristin’s full interview here:

As a company committed to building a better education experience, we’d like to extend our thanks to all educators, parents, elected officials and community leaders who are dedicated to providing quality education for all.

Happy American Education Week!

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