Distance Learning for All

ODE Guidance and Resources from Your SOESD

Dear Educators,

The prospect of facing school and district closure and the daunting task of preparing to transition from supplemental education to a distance learning environment can feel overwhelming, at best. Here at the SOESD we understand, and we want to support you in answering these questions: How do I continue to teach effectively, establish consistency, care and connection in the face of so much upheaval? Where do I even start?

We hope what we have compiled and curated below is a manageable set of excellent resources to help you to begin to build distance learning instructional skills. Remembering that care and connection are the priority during this time is paramount, which includes SELF-care and connection with your own needs. Finding balance during this strange time for ourselves and our students will make all the difference.


Your SOESD Regular Attendance Team

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This page is updated as frequently as changes are happening and answers MANY questions you may have at this time. Check back frequently! If your COVID-19 related questions are not answered here, reach out directly to ODE: ODECOVID19@ode.state.or.us

Distance Learning for ALL (DL4A): ODE Guidance

Click here for the latest guidance on DL4A from ODE.

Enrollment and Attendance: ODE Guidance

Click here for the latest guidance from ODE.

Brené Brown's Three Tips for Teaching Online

If you’re someone who is driven to show up for your students and connect, if you’re willing to be a learner, if you’re willing to stay curious, if you’re willing to change course (478 times in one semester or one week), YOU WILL TOTALLY CRUSH IT!

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We Have to Maslow Before We Can Bloom

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs should be next to Bloom’s Taxonomy in every classroom. While Bloom’s evaluates students’ path to mastery of a subject, Maslow circumscribes what students need in order to reach higher levels of understanding.

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Using Project Based Learning and Design Thinking to Encourage and Empower Your Students

Currently, students are feeling the overwhelming stress that sheltering in place, doing their best to stay healthy emotionally and physically AND trying to learn at the same time creates. For educators, it is of the utmost importance to design learning experiences that will enhance our children's ability to cope with the situations in which they find themselves, in the hope that they come out better for their experiences in the process.

Design Thinking and Problem Based Learning, both individually and combined, can be a tremendous source of creativity, inspiration, and wellness for students personally, their families, as well as their communities.

The diagram above illustrates that design thinking can be applied to any problem that needs a solution and can be used within a variety of disciplines. Design thinking puts empathy for those experiencing the problem in the center of the design process through an interview process. The problem is then clearly defined and then the brainstorming process for solutions can begin through ideation. A solution is then chosen and tested, and then depending on the results, the solution may continue to be refined until the desired outcome is achieved.

Lane ESD's School Improvement Team has put together an incredible example of an interdisciplinary Project Based Learning unit on wellness for middle schoolers that they consider to be "open source" and have offered up to be shared with and adapted by other districts. It is very well thought out and includes educator and student planning documents that are aligned to state standards in ELA, Social Studies, Math, Science and Health and PE, as well as the Buck Institute and PBLWorks best practices for project based learning. Also included are accommodations for distance learning in reading, writing and math. There are multiple opportunities to encourage and empower our students to become active problem-solvers by using Design Thinking throughout this very well organized project.

The Big Question that students will answer throughout the project:

"How can I meaningfully support the health and wellness of my community during times of physical distancing?"

When we give our students an opportunity to truly innovate, we encourage and empower them in ways we never could have imagined possible.

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Teaching Online: The Motherlode

If you read only one thing in this newsletter, this blog presents a wealth of options for how to teach online. There are structures for lessons, assessments, and creative ways to re-think teaching practices for k-12 distance-learning.

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A Slide Deck for Teaching Remotely: Online Resources for Engagement in a Variety of Modalities

How to Begin Teaching K-2 Online

This is a marvelously refreshing, grounded and practical approach that emphasizes how important it is to remember to give ourselves time and permission to figure out how we will handle it all. It might be hard and it will be different, and that's ok.

Parents Guide to Google Classroom in 2020
The Parents' Guide for Using Google Classroom 2020

This is a presentation that goes with the above video with illustrations of each step for accessing and using Google Classroom for Parents.

The Parent's Guide for Using Google Classroom: En Español

Google Classroom Spanish parent tutorial
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Teacher's Guide to Using Google Meet

This video was created for the SOESD to illustrate the features of Google Meet for anyone who would like to have an in-depth understanding from a presenter point of view. I appreciated the closed-captioning option for presenter audio, and much more.

Introducing: Google Meet's Breakout Rooms!

The most recent update of Google Meet included integration with Google Classroom. Breakout rooms aren't native YET, but this 6 minute YouTube tutorial walks teachers through each step of creating them for students very concretely.

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PE with Joe: Monday-Friday Live!

With the schools closed and with us all spending more time at home, it's more important than ever that we keep moving and stay healthy and positive. Exercise is an amazing tool to help us feel happier, more energized, and more optimistic.

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Indigenous Students Connect and Learn Using Facebook

A Facebook page is connecting indigenous students and teachers with online lessons for K-8 students.

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Assistive Technology Resources: Meeting Special Needs

This page contains a roundup of clickable articles, blogs, and apps that are all about meeting diverse needs through technology.

Chrome Extensions for Students with Special Needs

Technology can be a powerful tool to assist students with special needs or any sort of learning challenge. The Chrome web browser allows users to install a variety of extensions that provide tools to help all learners, regardless of ability level.

Newsela: FREE for Educators!

Newsela provides quality content trusted by teachers everywhere, and now it is FREE for educators through the 2019-20 school year! Click here to access Newsela ELA, Newsela Social Studies, Newsela Science, and The Newsela SEL Collection, and MORE.

Advice From Asia: Teachers and Admin Who Lived Through The Transition To Virtual Schooling

The video below is from the Coach Better Podcast, in which we get very sound and practical advice from administrators and teachers who just recently experienced the transitions we are facing.

Topics Covered for K-12:

  • Planning for teaching online
  • Scheduling synchronous online classes
  • What teachers should take home with them
  • How to use student/family/staff feedback about the transition to inform its evolution

Click and watch the video below to find out more, and look up the podcast to get more information that isn't covered in this episode!

Emergency School Closures Due to COVID 19 Roundtable Discussion 2
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The Basics: Virtual Attendance in Oregon (CURRENT Rules for Online Schools)

Oregon attendance rules require students to make two academic contacts a week to be compliant with full attendance. Academic contacts means a substantive communication that is two way between the STUDENT and their TEACHER(s). These contacts with their teacher(s) must be made on separate days each week.

Examples of academic contacts:

  • Attending and participating in a live/synchronous online class via a tele-learning/conferencing interface software.

  • Submitting an assignment and receiving substantial feedback within 24 hours of the initial interaction within the Learning Management System(LMS).

  • Communication via email including a reply within 24 hours between STUDENT and TEACHER(s).

  • A live phone call between STUDENT and TEACHER(s).

Each of these contacts will be counted as one half of the days available to students as part of the school calendar each week. Students that do not make these contacts for a substantive amount of time must be dropped in accordance with Oregon attendance rules.

At this time, we have not received attendance-specific guidelines that apply to Distance Learning for All. Your SOESD Regular Attendance Team has experience in virtual learning attendance and is available to support you in making the above guidelines more concrete and personalized for your district needs until further guidance is available. Let us know how we can serve you!

Connecting During School Closure: Building Belonging

Physical distancing does not need to create emotional distance between our educators and students. Our sister newsletter is for educators who would like resources for building care, connection and belonging during this time of physical isolation.