vipkid lighting best lighting for online teaching

See Nic Wander contains affiliate links and is a member of the Amazon Associates Program. I may earn a commission on purchases made through these links. Read my disclaimer to learn more.

Good lighting is an important element of any online classroom. Having appropriate lighting for teaching online will allow your students to see your expressions and body language, as well as give your classroom a more professional appearance. This post will cover how to choose the best lighting for online teaching.

Best Lighting for Online Teaching

As online teachers, good lighting is our friend! When you have the right online classroom lighting, you’ll look more professional (even if you’re teaching an early morning class in your pajama pants!) Your students will also be able to see your lovely face more clearly.

Wondering where to find the best lighting for online teaching? Take a look through the list below to get some ideas and choose the perfect option for your classroom.

Selfie Ring LightSimple, lightweight, rechargeable, affordable, great for traveling, and provide bright lighting for online classesCheck Prices
LED Adjustable Ring Light with ClampClip this ring light onto your desk for easy adjusting. Check Prices
Desk Lamp + White ShadeEasy to set up, creates a welcoming classroom look with less glare than a ring lightCheck Prices
Softbox Lighting KitHigh-quality natural-looking light, less glare, perfect if you’re looking for a permanent online classroom lighting setupCheck Prices

Best Ring Light For Online Teaching

One of the simplest and easiest ways to get good lighting for online teaching is to use a selfie ring light. A selfie ring light can be clipped onto your laptop to project bright white light onto your face while you teach.

Selfie ring lights are inexpensive, lightweight, and simple to use. Simply charge the light before class, click it on, and teach.

The only downside to selfie ring lights is that sometimes the light produced can be a bit intense. While this looks great on camera, your eyes might get tired after long hours of looking toward the ring light.

I’ve tried a few different options and my favorite has been the QIAYA selfie ring light. For me, it’s the best ring light for online teaching because it has three levels of brightness and you can adjust the amount of light as needed. It also clips onto your computer and holds a charge well.

LED Adjustable Ring Light with Clamp

This LED ring light for teaching online comes with a clamp so you can easily make adjustments. Position it wherever you want for your online classes and choose from three different light tones and ten brightness levels.

It’s USB powered and even has a small control panel on the cable so you can discreetly make adjustments to the brightness.

Desk Lamp with White Shade

Another great option for online teaching lighting is to use a basic desk lamp with a white shade. You want to find a desk lamp that has a central bulb with a fabric shade surrounding it so the light disperses toward your face, not pointed down at the desk.

Using a white shade will help ensure that your face shows up clearly and naturally. This lamp by limelight offers white shades and is a good shape for online teacher lighting.

Softbox Lighting Kits

If you have a bit more space for your online teaching setup and want to go with something more substantial than a ring light, softbox lighting kits make great lights for online teaching.

Softboxes are basically bright bulbs behind large diffuser screens. As the name suggests, the light appears softer and more natural.

Example: My Online Classroom Lighting Set Up

When I taught online, having a portable and easy lighting setup was a must. Here are some of my favorite online classroom lighting ideas that I’ve used over the past three years.

Best Lighting For Online Teaching: My VIPKID Lighting Set-Up

Use the Room Lighting

Before I start teaching, I turn on overhead lights and use a lamp if it’s available.

I set up the lamp directly behind my computer if possible. That gives even lighting on my face. If it’s off to the side, it can cause a weird sideways shadow.

If that isn’t enough or if I don’t have a lamp, I use a selfie ring light.

My Ring Light

I use the QIAYA Selfie Light Ring for teaching online lessons. You can read reviews and check prices for my ring light on Amazon.

For me, the QIAYA Selfie Light Ring has been the best ring light for teaching online because it offers:

  • Three levels of brightness
  • 4 hours of light on a single charge
  • Can be used with or without plugging it in
  • Low cost

Cons QIAYA Selfie Light Ring:

  • Can be very bright white, it might be nice to cover the light in fabric for less intense brightness
  • Needs to be clipped to your computer, which might not be suitable if you have a thick monitor

Once I have a more permanent classroom set up, I’m considering purchasing the softbox lights listed above. These would remedy the glare issue. But for the time being, my ring light is perfect for getting good online classroom lighting at an affordable price point.

What do you use to light your online classroom? Let me know in the comments below!

FAQ: Lighting for Online Classroom Ideas

How do you light an online classroom?

Start by using the light you already have in the room. Turn on overhead lights, face a window that gets good natural light, and place lamps on your desk behind your computer. Add extra classroom lighting through a ring light or softbox light kit.

What’s the best ring light for online teaching?

The QIAYA selfie ring light is my favorite ring light for online teaching because it has different brightness levels, it can clip directly onto a laptop for easy positioning, and it holds a charge well.

More Teaching English Online Classroom Tips!

Looking for more online ESL classroom resources? Check out these posts!

How to get the best lighting for teaching english online, including my vipkid lighting set up!
VIPKID lighting! Choosing the best lighting for your online classroom! Best lighting for vipkid classroom options explored!

Cover Photo by Manuel Sardo on Unsplash

About the Author

Hi! I'm Nic. Let's chat about remote work and ways to incorporate more travel into your life. Whether you're here to find an online job or need some tips for planning your next trip, I've got you covered! More about me

1 thought on “4 Ways To Get The Best Lighting For Online Teaching”

  1. So many friends are now having to switch to Online teaching and never did it before. I am forwarding all your information to the ones I know. And I just heard how frustrated a man was in New Hampshire when the school closed. Lots of new skills to learn. Thank you for being there to help so many.


Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.