How to Move Your Classes Online

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If your business is centered around offering classes, it might be hard to imagine what they would look like online. After all, how do you recreate the experience of a cooking class on a webinar or bring the energy of a studio workout to someone’s phone screen? Virtual events may not have the same je ne sais quoi as in-person events, but they do have a lot to offer: They’re convenient, they’re cost-effective, and they make it easy for people to join in regardless of location or other physical limitations.

Today, we’ll walk through ways you can take your educational experiences from the classroom to the screen. Even if you aren’t already offering educational experiences to your audience, you might come away with new ideas for how to begin offering virtual classes of your own.

Find the right tools for your class format

No two classes are exactly the same. Some harken back to our schooldays, with an instructor lecturing to the class on a topic. Others are interactive, encouraging participants to chime in with their own insight and questions.

When you’re transitioning to an online class, ask yourself: How much interactivity do you need to accomplish your class objectives? Let that answer drive your decisions about video conferencing vs. webinars vs. livestreaming.

Opt for video conferencing for interactive sessions

Do your participants need to be able to talk with each other in real-time? In that case, a video conferencing tool like Zoom or Google Hangouts makes it easy for everyone to hop on and join in.

This way, your class will still benefit from face-to-face interaction (well, face-to-screen-to-face interaction). Video conferencing brings the crackle of a live conversation to your class no matter where participants log on. This format works especially well for an instructor teaching a small group, like an art class or yoga session. By keeping the audience to 12 participants or less, you can interact as a group without getting overwhelmed.

Choose webinars for straightforward instruction

In some cases, real-time conversations can derail the class or make it hard to stick to a time limit. If you want to deliver a lecture-style lesson, use a webinar tool like Go2Webinar or WebinarJam. It’s up to you whether you deliver your class live or record it ahead of time to ensure smooth sailing. You can also decide whether to open up your webinar to questions from participants throughout the lesson, or save questions for a Q&A at the end.

Go live to build a sense of community

Wondering how to transition your fitness studio’s daily yoga class to an online format? Livestreaming is a great way to keep up the camaraderie in a virtual setting.

If you already have a following on social media, you can use the free livestreaming tools on Facebook, Instagram, or YouTube to run your class. You can receive and respond to feedback from participants by interacting with live comments. Many livestreaming services also offer playback, which means people can watch a replay of your class if they can’t make it to the live session.

Original article by Lauren, The Events Calendar. Edited by Aquarius.

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PS

Supplement your class with groups and messaging

If your community is used to conversing in-person, move your conversations to a virtual platform using private or public groups right here on Aquarius Groups (Paid members). And anyone can create free events in the calendar (free for all users) to promote your classes/workshops.

Watch for aquarius rolling out full online course system soon.

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