Zoom Meeting Notes: Adult Education

Teaching ESL in Adult Education means teaching with many older teachers. Many over 60. Some over 70. A few over 80. I love all my colleagues. Some of them, as you might have guess, have trouble with Zoom!

Planning meetings all week for teaching online next year. Took some maneuvering, but N can watch RH for most of this week. I race out of the shower and heat up some food. Forget my phone. Come back to garage. Forget my headphones. Come back. Sit down.

First topic: Using Google Docs with student writing. Oy. I feel like how RH must have felt when she got smacked in the face with a rubber dog fetch disc at the park. Now a presenter is confused about how to deal with screen sharing. Hooray!


The 2nd meeting hasn’t officially started yet. People have joined this meeting but it doesn’t start for five more minutes. I’m hearing coughing. Someone is eating something crunchy. Sounds like someone is vacuuming. Meowing. Somebody just farted. What a grab bag of sounds.
This is an extremely low-stakes stakeout.


“You either need to move your face or the computer.”
“Eating…trying to hide my mouth.”


In the middle of the meeting, an 84 year-old teacher calls the meeting moderator:

“Hold on, Bob is calling.”
“How do I get in to the meeting?”
We all listen as the moderator gets off the phone and the co-presenter takes over.

“Each person is going to have an opportunity this week to do a little project.” Ooh, rainbows and unicorns!


Meeting Host, (who has control of the “Mute All” function, but refuses to use it):
“After yesterday, if you keep blurting out like that today, I’m not going to participate anymore.”
“I’m SORRY!! My family is from Naples! It’s second nature!”


As a result of this week’s meeting, I’ve put together some

Zoom Guidelines for the Over-60 Crowd

Image for post
Image for post
photo via Visual Hunt

1. Only speak while you’re muted.
2. Make sure to eat crunchy foods (while un-muted) throughout meetings.
3. If you have an animal, make sure it is nearby and loud.
4. If you have a question, just blurt it out immediately.
5. Remember to spread your anxiety about technology at all times.
6. Especially when in large meetings with all of your colleagues.
7. Do not use any of the Zoom functions appropriately.
8. Raise your actual hand and wave it around wildly in front of your camera instead of clicking “Raise Hand” in the function menu.
9. Move all around so that your little square on the gallery view distracts from everyone else.
10. Get upset when anyone mentions the word “Upload.”
11. Make sure your screen cuts off most of your face.

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