As the new school year gets going there is going to be a lot more Zoom calls in our future. At my school students are going to be on Zoom or Google Meet for at least two days of every week to start the year. If that sounds like you, here is a handful of reminders about Zoom features and how to use them.

Virtual Backgrounds:
This is an option available to Mac, Windows, and some Chromebook users. This option allows you to place any picture of your choosing in place of the background that is in your default webcam view. It’s possible to use the virtual background as a means for making a green screen video. Here’s a video on how to make a green screen video with Zoom.

Whiteboards: 
Zoom has an integrated whiteboard that you can use at any time during a meeting. You’ll find the whiteboard function in the screen-sharing menu during your Zoom call. This video shows you how to use the whiteboard in Zoom.

Breakout Rooms: 
During a Zoom call you can divide participants into groups for small group discussion then bring them back into one large group. In order to use breakout rooms in Zoom you must have the breakout room function enabled in your account settings. For a detailed overview of how to use Zoom’s breakout rooms function, watch this recorded webinar hosted by Rushton Hurley from Next Vista for Learning.

Waiting Rooms: 
Enable the waiting room function in your Zoom account settings to prevent students from joining your Zoom meeting before you get there. Waiting rooms also allows you to make sure that no one joins your meeting without your approval. Watch this video to see how to enable the waiting room function.

Recording: 
If you plan to record your Zoom meetings, enable recording by default in your account settings. Doing this will ensure that you never forget to hit the record button at the start of your meeting.



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