Since March 2020 educators have worried about students falling behind. It has pushed teachers to work past reason, parents to stress about doing the teacher’s job, and left students outside of the traditional classroom. However, a pandemic is a worldwide challenge to education right now. It should embolden us to ask what if nobody is behind?
Sure, students’ academics are lagging by a traditional calendar year, but not necessarily relative to their peers. The artificial constraints of grade levels and standards that are aligned to specific ages are all that indicates anything is “behind.” And luckily we have control over that as educators.
A parallel phenomenon is teacher development in online instruction and learning. The forced transplanting of interaction from the classroom to online has accelerated educational technology use and offered many relatable use-cases for educators to build upon. Because teachers are doing this learning at the same time there is no benefit from others who came before them. We have almost reached one year in this emergency remote learning mode where teachers are finally able to examine what other teachers have accomplished. Teachers can select from a variety of ways to teach online and in a blended manner that matches their teaching style.
Here is a list of online teaching ideas that you may want to incorporate or share with another teacher. Share your favorites!
Learn to Teach Online
From March 2020+ all K-12 teachers have learned many lessons.
Which of these is your favorite?
The introduction is the start of your Social Presence in your online classroom. If you are a novice online educator you may be especially concerned. Allow me to share two methods for K-12 educators to enhance your social presence in your online classroom.
As the online opportunities increase, do you know how to create Teacher Presence in the online classroom to promote student engagement?
How can your lesson plan make it clearer to your observing administrator the totality of what is going on in your classroom?
We can extend all the grace we like in our virtual classrooms, but the disconnect between our deepest selves and what we do daily is broken for many of us. It isn’t about how kindly we treat each other as much as the hole left from the lesson not given, the improvement not made, the missing connection over joyful work in our classrooms. Many teachers are mourning for more than what is not, but also who they are not able to be right now.
Don't worry about Pandemic Grading; instead worry about intentionally crafting unconditional positive regard for each other.
Teachers who are not fluent in Online or Blended Learning environments need a variety of sample workflows to start to picture their students, with their content, navigating through the online versus face-to-face components of a class they teach.