a child's hands using a computerI sat in on a webinar hosted by the Zoom company the other day, learning a few more tips about using Zoom. Add this to the fact that I continue to be in Zoom a dozen or more times a week, sometimes up to six times a day. This is almost always as the meeting host and many times it’s helping other people learn how to use Zoom, through my facilitation of courses that help people learn how to design and facilitate synchronously online.

I wanted to share some of these new and sometimes hidden features of Zoom with you. Because sometimes we all feel like a child in the face of technology!

Did you know….?

  • That there is a spotlight button in the annotation toolbar that you can use like a laser pointer?
  • That it’s easier to use the “new share” button in the top floating toolbar while sharing a document or your screen, if you want to share something new? (Rather than stopping the share and starting a new share)
  • That if you use the “pause share” button (in the top floating toolbar while sharing), everyone else will continue to see what you’re sharing but you can go off and browse something else without them seeing?
  • That you can change a setting to show who has annotated what on a shared document or screen? (Choose “show names of annotators” from the More button in your upper floating toolbar when sharing your screen.)
  • That you can pause recording the session while you have participants in breakout rooms? (It’s at the top left of your Zoom window)
  • That you can press and hold the space bar to temporarily unmute yourself if you’re on mute? (If it doesn’t work for you, check your Zoom settings. It’s in Audio > Press and hold SPACE key to temporarily unmute yourself”)
  • That you can add Zoom as an add-on to your browser so you can create a Zoom meeting while you’re in, for example, Google Calendar?
  • That it takes 60 seconds for Zoom to close all breakout rooms and bring participants back to the session? Build this into your session timing if you’re facilitating/running the meeting. *Update: Just found out you can adjust this in the Options menu as you are setting up the breakout rooms. (Still learning!)
  • That you can insert multiple questions in the same poll?
  • That you only have access to create polls if you are on Zoom paid accounts?
  • That you can livestream a Zoom meeting out to Facebook, YouTube, etc? (paid plan only)
  • That the easiest way to have co-hosts be able to help with breakout room facilitation is to put them in a room and have them circulate between rooms? (Otherwise, they won’t be able to see anything with breakout rooms.)

Post in the comments if you’ve discovered other “little known” features of Zoom lately.

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