Teaching has always brought with it its own unique set of challenges that change from year to year (or if you work in secondary education, from one class to another), but the coronavirus pandemic has taken the challenges faced by teachers to a whole new level.
Providing high-quality education to all students regardless of their age, or ability, has always been the top priority of those in the teaching profession, and doing this in a classroom environment whilst it can be a challenge is certainly doable. Moving to remote teaching presents a whole new array of challenges and stresses that can make the job even harder. Here are just a few tips to help you with the remote teaching experience that is new to so many.
Give them a few minutes!
Teaching several students who are distracted by being in their home environment, and can see where their classmates are, their pets and any younger siblings or parents who wander into the room is the first challenge that you will face. No matter what age of children you are teaching it is understandable that the first time you all log in your students will want to show you their pets, ask each other questions about the room they are in, and generally just socialise. This is a new experience for you all so let them have a few minutes to get this social interaction out of the way before reigning them back in. This isn’t much different to the start of any new school year or term when your pupils haven’t seen each other for a few weeks.
Consistency is vital when your teaching methods are limited. Use an easy-to-read format for all of your lessons that will quickly create familiarity for your students. Getting into the swing of studying can be much harder for many children when they are in the more relaxed confines of their own homes, so it can be a good idea to start each day with a simple task. This might be a few simple quick fire maths problems, some easy questions based on what they learnt in the last lesson or a quick challenge on a new topic to see what they already know. This should help to focus their minds before you begin.
Make sure that if you use any relevant links for your students, and these are really better suited to older students who more likely to need more information, that they are embedded (and work) at the start of the lesson – this will cause less disruption later.
Consider your expectations.
The expectations that you have for your students studying remotely may need to be different for those that you have when doing face-to-face teaching. Some students will finish tasks that you set them much faster than others whilst there will be those who struggle and may not be as comfortable attracting your attention on a remote platform as they would in person. Try to plan work that will allow for this. Set realistic timeframes and offer optional work that people can complete should they finish the original piece you have set.
Ensure Your IT Systems are robust.
Remote teaching is hard, but having effective IT provision can help make it much easier to deliver. If your school could benefit from a more up-to-date IT provision, why not consider moving to one with more flexibility, and that allows you to deliver online learning more effectively?
Here at CloudHappi, we’d be happy to suggest a cloud-based solution that your school could use to deliver remote learning more effectively. Our cost-effective bespoke services allow you to have the best opportunity to deliver a great standard of learning, whatever the challenges you face. For more information contact one of our expert team firstname.lastname@example.org