In the virtual classroom, it’s easy to forget this idea because silence can be somewhat unnerving. You might be tempted to chatter away to fill that dead air.
When I facilitate virtual classroom sessions, there are a few situations in which I like to stay silent:
- When I ask a question and direct the participants to respond in chat or on the whiteboard, I prefer to stay silent so that everyone can process the question and make a thoughtful response. Once the allotted time is up, I debrief their responses.
- When I give the learners a task to complete such as: go to a particular page in the workbook, review a document, or complete some type of calculation. Again, the silence may be difficult, but the learners need quiet to focus on the task at hand.
- When I change slides, I like to pause briefly before I dive into the content. This gives everyone a chance to take in the visual and information presented on the new slide.
- When someone else is speaking, it’s important to give them the floor and ensure everyone can hear their response.
Remember, silence is golden in the virtual classroom. Set your learners up for success by staying quiet during specific times during each of your sessions.
If you’re a virtual classroom trainer, join us in an upcoming session of The Virtual Trainer. In this workshop, you’ll get lots of tips and tricks, as well as the practice you need to facilitate training within your organization.