PalFish Demo Assessment Criteria 2: Teaching environment

The second key assessment category for your PalFish demo class is the teaching environment. This is also marked out of five, and is relatively straightforward to achieve full marks.

Camera positioning

The first essential criterion under this category is your camera positioning. Your face must be clearly positioned centrally in the screen, showing your face and shoulders. Your phone should not be positioned at a weird angle – instead, make sure the camera is facing you straight on. It is generally best to prop your phone against a stand or purchase a simple tripod to enable your phone to be placed upright.

Classroom lighting

You must be well lit and clearly visible on the screen. Make sure that you are not backed against a window, as this will result in you appearing as a silhouette. Instead, directly face a window for good natural light.

Alternatively, you can use a bright desk lamp – rather than shining it directly at your face (which can result in harsh shadows), instead shine it against the nearby wall or ceiling to more gently diffuse the light. Another option is to purchase a ring light – these can be found relatively inexpensively online and often clip onto phone stands/ tripods to create a more professional setup.

Device stability

Although teaching from your phone does of course give you a lot of flexibility in where you choose to teach, you do need to make sure your phone is stabilised on some form of stand, not held in your hands. Personally, I use a tripod to hold my phone more easily, but you can also improvise by propping against a stack of books. Make sure the phone is well stabilised though, as you will be clicking on various tools on the screen throughout the class.

Background noise

The final criterion is the quality of your audio. Make sure you teach in a quiet environment without excessive background noise. I would recommend closing your windows and doors to prevent external sounds disturbing the class, and make sure notifications/ vibrations on your phone are also switched off.

Although PalFish doesn’t require you to use a headset and microphone, this might be worth considering if you are concerned about unavoidable background noises. Be sure to check your headset works well with your phone beforehand, as you don’t want tech issues affecting the demo class. Note that cheaper wired headphones often don’t produce good audio quality, particularly if the microphone part is bumping against your chest – go for an over-ear headset with professional microphone.

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