Adapting Involvement Learning Activities for Online or Hybrid Use

By November 17, 2020 Teacher Tips

Many of the Involvement Learning activities in the Standard Lesson curriculum assume an in-person classroom setting. As written, such activities include distributing paper handouts, writing on the board, and breaking into pairs or small groups. If a class is conducted entirely online or a hybrid of in-person and online, these activities are not always easy to convert.

Learners may experience difficulty when some learners gather in-person and other learners attend virtually. The group of in-person learners may get into a lively discussion, leaving out the digital learners. Learners participating remotely may feel they aren’t free to “break in” and contribute to the larger conversation. Further, the teacher may speak primarily to a camera, neglecting those physically present.

This document suggests how to adapt the most common classroom elements of the Involvement Learning (IL) pages for use with an online or hybrid class—so that everyone can be included.

Whenever you see the phrases mentioned below on an IL page, refer to this document for an adaptation.

  • “you prepare”—IL pages frequently task the teacher to prepare simple handouts for distribution. In an online/hybrid classroom, consider distributing the handouts to the in-person learners, while using text or e-mail to send electronic copies of the same handout to your online learners.
  • “from the activity page”—Standard Lesson makes additional activities available via activity pages. Remember to text or e-mail the exercises on these pages to your remote learners.
  • “write on the board”—It’s important to be sure everyone—physically present and online—can see the board. If your entire class is online, “the board” becomes the software you’re using to record learners’ responses. Zoom’s share screen option will allow all virtual attendees to see those responses as the discussion progresses. If your class is a mix of in-person and virtual attendees, you can turn your webcam toward the board you’re writing on.
  • “break into pairs” or “form small groups”—Several online meeting platforms, like Zoom or Google Meet, have solutions for breaking large groups into smaller groups and then coming back together later.
    • If all your learners are online, consider using Zoom Breakout Rooms (which you can learn about online).
    • If some of your learners are online and others are physically present (a hybrid class), the former can use Zoom Breakout Rooms, while the latter gather physically.

As with any tool, the more you use it, the better you’ll become with it. Whichever software solution you use for including your online, virtual learners, practice with it ahead of time.

Several Zoom tutorials are here.

The entire Standard Lesson staff is prayerfully upholding you as you adjust to these unusual and challenging times. But even as conditions change and technology advances, nothing shakes the throne of the Lord God Almighty.

Here are the suggested replacements for Involvement Learning Activities for each lesson:

November 2020

September 2020

August 2020

July 2020


June 7

Into the Lesson

  • For the “Alternative” activity, consider this adjustment: Have all learners decode the message together, instead of in pairs.

Into the Word

  • Consider this adjustment: Have learners research book descriptions on or a book publisher’s website. Have them work silently on their own to write the back-cover copy. Get volunteers to read their summaries.


June 14

Into the Lesson

  • For the main activity (hiding candy), consider this adjustment: Create an online scavenger hunt by sending learners a list (you prepare) of website addresses and asking them to find a certain object, sentence, or number on each page.

Into the Word

  • For the main activity (distributing dictionaries), consider this adjustment: Get volunteers to look up the words on online dictionaries such as,,, or of course their own printed dictionaries.
  • For the “Option” activity, consider this adjustment: Have learners do the activity together instead of in small groups. (However, if you’re an expert Zoom user, you can use Zoom breakout rooms.)


June 21

Into the Word

  • For the main activity (discussing a teen’s situation), consider this adjustment: Discuss each scenario as a group, moving from “Religious” to “Educational.” If you have time, discuss the “Domestic” challenge together, as well.
  • For the “Option” activity, consider this adjustment: Instead of breaking into study pairs, complete the worksheet activity as a group. 


June 28

Into the Word

  • Consider this adjustment: Instead of breaking into two groups, keep everyone together but discuss arguments that someone espousing Wisdom would use and that someone displaying Folly might use. Contrast these as a group, perhaps having two volunteers engage in a short mock debate.
David C Cook Editorial

Author David C Cook Editorial

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