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Kubi - Strategies for Success for Instructors

Class Attributes for Kubi Integration

Kubi provides a flexible solution to allow remote students to attend face-to-face classes. Situations that Kubi use is appropriate for include (but are not limited to):

  • Highly interactive face-to-face classes where it is advantageous for the remote student to control their perspective
  • Classrooms that are not equipped with video-conferencing software
  • Courses without an equivalent online option

Logistics and Preparation

Remote Student

  • Ideally, the student would already have had a successful experience with online learning. If not, openly discuss the challenges and affordances of remote learning to help the student determine if it is a good match for them.
  • Discuss work expectations (including assessment needs) and classroom logistics with the remote student.

Orientation for Face-to-Face Students

  • Discuss the use of the Kubi in the classroom with face-to-face students, including the rationale behind it and how it works. If possible, let them test drive it if they’d like to!
  • If changes are made to the setup of the Kubi or to classroom interactions with the Kubi, be transparent with remote and face-to-face students about the rationale behind changes.

Kubi Use in Class

  • Ideally, the Kubi should be placed in the same location at the start of each class so the remote student is properly oriented. If/when you need to move the Kubi, inform the remote student before picking up the device and let them know why you’re moving them (e.g. “I’m putting you next to Katie for a pair activity”).
  • Identify 1-2 students to serve as Kubi partners or buddies. These students should be trained on how to operate the Kubi and troubleshoot issues with wifi or audio. They should also exchange cell numbers to facilitate communication by text.
  • If more than 2 students want to be Kubi partners, try to facilitate this by rotating the partners.
  • Check in with Kubi partners after a few weeks to make sure that assisting with the Kubi isn’t disrupting their ability to pay attention or participate in class.
  • Determine if there is a threshold for troubleshooting.
    • For example, if technical problems continue for 5 minutes or longer, decide if they are manageable for that class session and/or contact the IT Service Center for support at 303-735-4357 (5-HELP) or oithelp@colorado.edu.
    • Tip: If there is a problem with the iPad’s audio or with hearing the Kubi student, the student could rely on Zoom’s chat function that day or in the case of multiple Kubis in one classroom, the Kubi student could private chat another remote student to ask their question to the class.
  • If the noise level of the class gets too loud and it becomes difficult for the remote student to hear, encourage Kubi partners to convey important instructions to the Kubi student and to restate the Kubi student’s questions to the class.

Pedagogical Considerations

Classroom Management and Planning

  • If the classroom uses a traditional chalkboard, use thicker chalk and write very clearly so the remote student can read it.
  • When asking targeted questions to individual students, it’s best to initially call out students’ names beforehand, including the remote student. It’s even better to give the Kubi student advance warning, “John, I’ll be calling on you next.” This gives the Kubi student time to unmute their microphone if needed.
  • If the remote student doesn’t respond to a direct question within 30 seconds due to audio issues, the instructor could move on to another student to avoid wasting valuable classroom time.
  • As the instructor scans across the faces of the students in the classroom, make sure to include the Kubi student.
  • Carefully plan for and structure equal assessments for face-to-face and remote students. This may be accomplished by setting up online exams that face-to-face students complete in class and remote students complete while keeping the Kubi window open so their faces are visible.
  • Consider how you will distribute handouts and activities on paper to the Kubi student ahead of time. You can email them to the remote student or use a dropbox tool with time and date access restrictions.
  • Encourage face-to-face students to be creative problem solvers and active participants in brainstorming solutions to problems that surface with communication or classroom activities.

Identity and Engagement of the Kubi Student

  • Encourage the remote student to be an active participant and regularly move the Kubi to demonstrate engagement and interest in the class.
  • Ideally, have the Kubi set up a few minutes before class starts to allow the remote student to participate in pre-class conversations between students and to conduct any audio troubleshooting if needed.

Group Activities

Assigning groups

  • Regularly change the students paired with the Kubi to allow all students to work with the remote student. This will allow the remote student to get acquainted with their classmates and will improve the relationships between remote and face-to-face students.
  • Each time the class works in pairs or small groups, clearly identify the names of each student assigned to work with the Kubi student.
  • Move the Kubi to the best location for group work. Consider audio limitations and place the Kubi so that the remote student has equal footing with face-to-face partners and can see multiple partners at the same time without panning. (See example set up for a group of 4 on the right.)
Example placement of Kubi so remote student has equal footing with face-to-face partners and can see multiple partners at the same time without panning. Kubi is placed with three students sitting in an arc facing the kubi.

Working with groups

  • Consider providing the remote student with a small whiteboard so they can participate in writing activities and show their work on screen. This could also be accomplished with an online application such as Google Docs.
  • Group writing activities could be conducted in Google Docs. Make sure face-to-face students bring their own devices for full participation.