This is the first of three posts.
As this school year winds down, I’ve started thinking about what I’ve learned from teaching online that I can transfer back into an in person space.
Some of you may be thinking it’s too early to be doing that. After all it’s only the end of March.
But when I return to teaching online after Spring Break, it will be April. And not just the 1st of April. It will be April 6th. After that, time will go by really fast.
Here are four ideas for now. I know my list will grow and evolve over the next few weeks, but this is a start.
(1) Targeted and frequent one-on-one and small group sessions. Although I’ve always done one-on-one conferring with students and taught small groups, this year of teaching online has been different. My sessions with students have been more intentional. More targeted to what kids present as needing or wanting to learn. Even during those times when I haven’t been sure what to address with students because I didn’t yet know them well enough, I was able to use those opportunities to get to know them.
Because I have less face2face time with students I have been more thoughtful about what I address during conferences; there’s no time to waste. Every minute counts.
(2) Focus on one or two related problems in math for the week. Build on the previous day’s teaching by privileging the idea that less is more. And, yes, we’ve always known this. But have we always practiced it?
Teaching online has taught me to focus on what’s essential. To make every minute count.
(3) Use shared Google Docs and Slides as collaborative spaces for students. Support them to use the comment feature in Google Docs and Slides to “work together” much as they would be doing if they were in person.
(4) Use shared Google Docs and Slides for students to check in with me about their personal reading and writing. This will allow me to have a public running conversation with each student, via commenting, about reading and writing.
If you taught online this year, what are your takeaways? What will you keep and what will you discard when you return to in person teaching?
Cross posted to The Two Writing Teachers March Slice of Life Story Challenge.