3 Creative Ways to Celebrate Student Success in the Online Classroom

There is much to celebrate when students do well in their online courses! After all, success in online learning requires excellent time management skills, the ability to learn in a new environment, and so much more. Looking for ways to celebrate student achievements that go beyond the typical “good job” email? Here are three creative tactics you can try!

It’s no secret that online learning can be challenging for some students. That’s why it’s so crucial that educators take the time to celebrate student successes.

Not only does acknowledging positive work make students feel good, but it also encourages them to keep doing quality work. A win-win!

However, the way you construct these messages matters.

The most common way to communicate with virtual learners is by email. Online students receive so many emails throughout their courses — progress reports, check-ins, and class updates, just to name a few. 

Due to the high volume and generic format, many of these emails go unread. When it comes to praise and affirmation, you don’t want students to miss your messages celebrating their hard work! 

The tips below can help you send messages your students want to read while celebrating the progress they’ve made in their online courses. 

Tip #1: Make the shoutout known to all

If you normally send weekly emails to students, consider including a celebration section recognizing a successful student of the week. This strategy may inspire some students to make progress to earn a spot in the “shoutout of the week.”

Important caveat: You should always first ASK the student if it is okay to share their achievement with their peers. When asking the student for approval to share their good news, you might also ask if it would be okay to include their guardian and local mentor on the announcement. 

Tip #2: Try using GIFs, memes, or Bitmojis

Instead of a plain old email, consider sending students congratulatory Bitmojis, memes, or GIFs. This gives you a chance to show more of your personality to your students and make a personal connection with them.

Besides, students are often more inclined to send GIFs or memes in their communications. Using these images to congratulate students will be more relatable and may yield stronger responses than email alone. 

Tip #3: Send a token of your appreciation

Another way to celebrate student success is to send them a small token of your appreciation. 

This doesn’t have to cost money! You could, for example, give your students something to remember their accomplishments by creating certificates for them, using tools such as Bannerbear or Canva

If it’s within budget, you may choose to offer students a small treat or eGift Card to celebrate their hard work.

When it comes to celebrating student success, the ideas are endless. Whatever method you choose, shedding more light on your students’ positive contributions can be a great way to boost engagement and motivation in your online classroom!

Picture of Taylor Shivers

Taylor Shivers

Shortly after graduating from Michigan State University, Taylor became a part of the Michigan Virtual team as a student success coach. Before joining the company, she was involved in various organizations. Taylor was a Girl Scouts leader, created a Help the Homeless seminar, and volunteered at after-school programs for refugee students. When she is not working in these organizations, she enjoys her time at home watching Marvel movies and the sitcom Friends. She is currently pursuing her master’s degree in clinical psychology.

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