Many teachers are a few weeks into this remote learning and remote teaching experience. I asked my reading teacher friend, Julia, how she would describe her experience so far and she responded with a link to this video.
@makeshift.macaroni##ukulele ##uke ##originalsong ##teachersoftiktok ##tiktokteacher ##smallgestures
If you don’t click through to watch the video, (I highly recommend it!) it is a teacher strumming her guitar in peace. Then she screams… a lot! You really have to watch to get the full comedic effect.
We asked our Facebook Group and other teachers their best practices for remote teaching, and we compiled and shared our favorites below. Here are some remote teaching tips for teachers.
5 TIPS FOR REMOTE TEACHING
Note: We understand that many teachers do not have the autonomy to do what they think is best for remote learning due to district or administration requirements. This list is intended to give you ideas from other teachers who are having success.
1. Create a FAQs Page on Your Class Website
This brilliant remote teaching tip was shared by Kelly. Are you getting tired of responding to the same questions about log in, passwords, and when assignments are posted or due? Only you know what logistical questions are taking away from your instructional or planning time. Create a FAQs page or slide that you can link or email when you are being asked the same question for the eighteenth time. Other ideas for your FAQs page include how to access assignments, office hour times, where to take notes, when grades are updated, late work policy etc.
2. Be Consistent
Many teachers commented that since students are receiving so many instructions from multiple teachers, it would be best for students and teachers to create standard procedures (perhaps even across schools or grade levels) by adapting consistency in the following ways:
- Post assignments in the same place – Even if you are linking to Desmos or some other assignment, always post assignments to the same place — this could be a LMS or Google Classroom.
- Post assignments at the same time each day – Since scheduling assignments is a feature most LMS have, it would be best to take advantage. Decide either that your assignments for the entire week will be posted every Monday at 8 am or that your assignments for the day will be posted everyday at 8 am. This helps students and parents plan for their week. One parent told me that her student’s teacher post assignments on Sundays to help working parents plan for their week.
- Keep a consistent due date – If you are grading assignments, choose a day of the week and time that everything is due.
- One subject per day – My former school has dedicated one day of the week to each subject. Monday is reading. Tuesday is math. Wednesday is history. Thursday is science. Friday is for electives. Each teacher provides about 1-2 hours worth of either assignments, office hours, or live/recorded teaching for students.
3. Assign a Manageable Amount of Work
Many teachers shared that lowering your expectations for the amount of work students complete daily is acceptable and encouraged. As adults, my husband and I are getting much less done in our work day, and we have our own computers and rooms to work in with closed doors. Many of our students with working parents are now responsible for younger siblings or are sharing devices or coping with the drastic changes to their lives. And they are students! I would say about half of my students needed pretty heavy encouragement and reminders to stay on task and complete their work when I was standing next to them, so adjust your expectations if you haven’t already to prevent frustration. Calling a student to kindly check in with them during this time would probably also encourage work completion.
4. Hold Office Hours
This remote teaching tip came up with teachers and parents I spoke electronically with. Even if just 1 or 2 students show up, that means your office hours were purposeful. Record or find a video lesson for students to watch on their own time with some questions (Edpuzzle is perfect for this!) and then hold office hours (at the same time everyday) so students can ask questions and check their work. It’s like a small group!
5. School Culture Still Matters
If you aren’t drowning, and you want to engage your students outside of math content, then encourage students to participate in picture taking challenges. Maybe if they participate, they receive bonus points or get an assignment/homework pass. Ideas include: taking a picture of yourself doing the following activities:
- Putting away laundry
- Playing a game with their family
- Going on a walk outside
- Riding their bike
- Completing an art project
- Cooking a meal
- Something that made them laugh
- Supporting a local business
What is working for you? What is not working? What are some remote teaching tips that you would add to this list? If you need any more help with remote learning, please check out our free resources here.