Offered as template in case it’s helpful:
“Hey, students. So I think by Wednesday, I’ll be ready to try holding a Zoom class with you. The invite is below — you can call in from a landline (no video, obviously), or a smartphone or computer. If you want to download and install the Zoom app, it might make it all a little smoother (it’s very fast and easy to install), but you can also access it with just a web browser.
For Wednesday’s class, we’re just going to do a group check-in, then talk about plans for the next week, and maybe work on a little discussion of Achebe’s Things Fall Apart if there’s time, looking at why Okonkwo failed so badly at rousing his people to fight against the colonizers. (So if you haven’t finished reading the book, now would be a very good time to do that.) But I want to emphasize that the Zoom class is optional — it’s meant to be there as a resource to help you, but if your life circumstances would make it difficult for you to attend, it’s totally fine not to join us. It’d be nice to see your smiling faces, though!
When you join, video will be off as a default, so do go ahead and turn it on if you like — up to you. (If you don’t want to show us your background, Zoom has a ‘virtual background’ option in preferences, which lets people hide the piles of laundry, etc.) When you’re not trying to talk, if you can keep your audio muted, that’ll cut down on excess noise. Open up the chat window — if you’re having any trouble, you can type in there, and I should see it and be able to respond. If you do want to say something, either raising your hand on video, or typing ‘hand’ should work; I’ll be keeping an eye out for that. We’ll try it, anyway!
Once we see how Wednesday goes, I’ll make plans for Friday, but tentatively, expect that we’ll have the same kind of meeting at classtime on Friday.