Learning from visiting each others' synchronous classes

Hello colleagues, One of the most valuable ways to learn from others is to observe their classrooms. Observing a face-to-face class obviously requires geographic closeness; however, it occured to me that visiing a remote, synchronous class would be easy. 

Just as we would for a face-to-face visit, first checking with your administrator about having a visitor would be important.  Assuming you receive approval from your administrator, and you would welcome having a visitor to your synchronous class, let us know in this thread. The best way would be to give a brief overview of the class, including the days, times, and time zone for the class, as well as the level you are teaching. Provide your email address, so anyone who might be interested in visiting your class can contact you privately to make arrangements. 

In a recent discussion thread, I invited teachers to visit my class, so if you'd like to visit, please contact me at susanfinn_miller@iu13.org. I'm currently teaching an advanced group of learners in an Integrated English Literacy and Civics Education (IELCE) class. These students have tested out of the ESL levels and are now being tested with TABE. The class meets Monday through Thursday mornings from 9:00 to 10:30 AM Eastern.

Take care, Susan Finn Miller

Moderator, English Langauge Acquisition CoP


Hello Susan!

I wanted to thank you for having me as a visitor in your class today. I really enjoyed meeting your students and participating in the activities. It was great to have this opportunity to observe an experienced teacher in action. I recommend visiting Susan's class to anyone who has the time and ability!

I teach a lower level ESL than Susan's class, but I still learned so much from this visit. I have new ideas about how to structure and create routine in a class, which is so important right now with everything being remote. I also loved seeing exactly how Susan uses her vocabulary workouts teaching the words from the academic vocabulary list. These are excellent lessons that Susan has offered to share with all of us.

I've been using Zoom to teach my classes since March but I still feel like I have so much to learn. It helped to see how Susan uses the breakout rooms with her classes. It's more difficult to teach and manage the breakout rooms with lower level ESL, but with time I think I will be able to use it more often and with greater success. 

Thanks again, Susan! 

~Jennifer Kluempen 



Thank you, Jennifer, for your kind words. I'm happy to hear your visit was meaningful. The students loved having the opportunity to interact with you. You are so right to emphasize the importance of building in routines -- I believe routines are even more important in the online environment since once learners understand the routine, we don't have to devote time to explaining what we want them to do.

Take care, Susan 

Hi Susan and all,

I always get a big dose of inspiration when I see how well others are adapting to our new online learning.  Susan, would you consider posting a recording of one of your Vocabulary Workout sessions?  I think that many of us would love to "see" it without actually bothering your class by sitting in.  Thanks!


Hi Catherine, I would definitely consider recording a session; however, it would be no bother at all to have you visit. The students absolutely LOVE having visitors to interact with in English, so I hope you might consider coming for a visit. Our summer class will begin on July 13.

Any and all are welcome to join us! Contact me at susanfinn_miller@iu13.org if you'd like to visit. FYI -- the class I'm teaching is advanced.

Take care, Susan