This past year has offered everyone different lenses to view the world that we live in and was especially hard on teachers and students. They have had to learn to adapt to new ways and modes of learning that at some points seemed impossible. Parents have also had a hard time restructuring their routines to adapt to their children’s schedules as well. Here are a few lessons we have gathered throughout this past year that can help teachers ease into new modes of teaching that.
Plan with the end in mind:
If you don’t know where you want to go, you’re unable to get there. Planning instruction, units, and lessons with the end in mind, has been critical for sustainability and effective teaching. This year, we have a lot less teaching time on our hands, so there’s no time to spare. Understanding what material, talents, and skillsets you expect students to show at the conclusion of your course are essential. A roadmap for your classroom curriculum can help you plan the goals, assessments, and tasks you want to include throughout the school year. It also helps to dwindle down the lessons to determine what to keep and what to remove.
Be open to new ways of learning:
If this pandemic has taught us anything it’s that life can change at the drop of a dime with or without our consent. With that being said, it’s best to stay aware of new ways and modes of communicating and teaching your students. They can only receive lessons as far as you meet them mentally. For some students, their mental states have drastically changed over the course of this last year. Staying patient and knowing each day always has the potential to be better than the last can have a positive impact on your students.
Keep students engaged:
Students would be more engaged if you incorporate commitment into your classes. Creating opportunities for student input—responses to queries, personal examples, and reactions to images—regularly and deliberately during a more conventional lecture or an immersive conversation holds students attached to the lesson and improves its efficacy. In hybrid mode, entirely remote mode, and now with the majority of students present.
Help your students learn by being genuine:
Students cannot genuinely connect with things that they do not relate to. Students must be able to take ownership of their learning. Permitting the news of the world around them and events to make their way into our classes, conversations helps them to feel like they are being their authentic self. Allowing their minds to explore and process what is happening during this time can enhance their life skills and coping abilities. Subsequently, having them concentrate on their abilities to memorize, analyze, and collaborate results in continuous development and mastery for students that would benefit them far beyond classroom learning.