What's New @ 542
Teachers Share What They Have Learned
I have learned about many new techniques and apps that I didn't use before and I hope to incorporate them in my mainstream teaching for the fall.
Distance teaching has meant having to supplement my classroom instructional materials with online videos, tutorials, and resources. Aside from the time it has taken, seeking out new information and updating my course materials is beneficial. If I had not been “forced” into doing so, I would be more likely to rely on the materials I already have in place. It has also been beneficial to learn new programs, and to have recorded discussions and lectures available for future students, to accompany what they already get from me in class. While I hope this is truly a short-term situation, my own growth during this time will benefit classes in the future.
Distance teaching provided me an opportunity to learn many new programs which allowed me to deliver content to the students in an organized way. Some of the programs utilized included Screencastify, EdPuzzle, Khan Academy and Google Applied Skills. Those are just a handful of the many programs/resources incorporated into my distance learning plan. All proved to be valuable and offered variety to the student, helping keep them engaged from day to day.
I have learned to use screencastify to post lessons into classroom so I can record my lessons for students to watch at their leisure.
I learned that distance learning has more screen time than I would want and that I really miss my students. I miss interacting with them, laughing with them, helping them understand the material, seeing them in the hallways with their friends, ...
I've learned to communicate more often with parents and students. What I'm still trying to figure out is the right balance of deadlines for tests and assignments. I am also still trying to figure out how to motivate students who don't like this way of learning.
I am definitely ready for teaching/learning to go back to the way it used to be. But until then, the google meets help me to stay motivated. Seeing my students gives me the extra lift I need for that day.
I now spend most of my day instead of interacting with a classroom full of students, sitting at the computer by myself interacting with submitted assignments and videotaping short instructional videos to be pushed out several times a day. In addition, I'm also preparing the learning materials that are delivered each Friday to my students, all while attempting new technology skills.
The positives of distance learning are the connections I've made with parents and the pushing of myself to learn new technology skills to best meet the needs of my students. I've missed the daily interactions with my students and more so, teaching to a classroom full of children. The time factor to make this work is huge. It is by far more difficult to teach this way and make it work for everyone. After doing distance learning since March, I can't wait to teach with a room full of students again.