Now that school is back in session, TeacherMade is here to help with distance learning. We’ve talked with Teachers all over the country, so we know that distance learning is challenging. We’ve rounded up some tips that can work in any classroom at any age. Troubleshoot distance learning with these nine tips.
As a Teacher who depends on technological tools, it’s essential to be aware of the tools you use to have backup tools. Things happen, and you need to keep moving in your online digital classroom. You need to know how to contact your school’s tech coach to get a backup computer, microphone, or camera. Because these things are essential for virtual teaching, you should also encourage your students to go through these motions. This will ensure that they know how to have the tools to be successful, even when something happens.
Every software and app you introduce to your digital learning classroom should come with clear instructions that you put together. This sounds time-consuming, but it will save you time in the long run. This is because your students are used to hearing directions in your voice, and just using the instruction manual from an app will not be as effective. It will also allow you to learn the ins and outs of the software you are using.
Were you thrown into distance learning as a traditional classroom Teacher? Did you just put your pdf worksheets and assignments up in Google Classroom and hope for the best? Don’t do it this way! Instead, take the time to format your existing worksheets to make them editable for virtual learning.
TeacherMade can help with this. Just upload your worksheet (we support these file types). Then your worksheet becomes the background of your online digital worksheet. Add questions to this background. You can then add in an answer key for self-scoring. Post your worksheet link in your LMS platform and have your students complete it.
With online learning, your students are not in the same room as you when you give directions. You need to be conscientious about providing instructions because it will allow assignments to go more smoothly. You won’t have to ask as many questions, and students won’t get as frustrated. You can walk students through instructions in a straightforward way by using the announcement function in Google Classroom, screencast apps like Screencastify, or you can record audio instructions in TeacherMade. TeacherMade allows you to give verbal directions on assignments so that you can guide students along the way.
This one seems obvious, but we need to say it. Pick apps that work, and don’t be afraid to drop ones that don’t. You can lose students if an app is too glitchy or isn’t easy to use. So make sure you stick with ones that will work. If an app isn’t working for you, then try out another option. Don’t be too stuck on a piece of technology that isn’t serving you or your online class.
Not only do your apps need to function correctly, but they need to be effective in helping you teach your lesson. If an app isn’t effective, take it out of your lineup. The reason for this is that you can lose your students in the shuffle if you use too many different apps. You need to have a more minimalistic approach. It can be confusing for students to access multiple apps when completing an assignment.
This is one of the reasons so many Teachers like TeacherMade. It is truly a workhorse in the classroom. Not only does TeacherMade convert your existing worksheets to digital worksheets, but our app also grades students’ work as well.
There has to be structure to your virtual classroom so that students always know what to expect. This will give your students a sense of security. Put information in a central hub. Typically this is an LMS platform like Google Classroom, Canvas, or Schoology. Make sure students can access all assignments from this central hub. (By the way, TeacherMade integrates with all major LMS platforms.)
We recently discussed this when discussing student motivation in the digital classroom, but it’s a common problem to troubleshoot. Students need to feel connected to their peers when they are physically distant. Feeling connected at school is one of the key motivators that students need. You can do this by requiring more collaborative assignments among students. This way, students feel a part of a larger learning community.
This goes hand in hand with a well-structured distance learning classroom. But you need to communicate frequently with students and parents. Students are your priority. So you need to reach out to students who may be struggling. You will also have to communicate more frequently with students about time management with virtual learning. It can be challenging for students to manage their time in a virtual classroom.
Additionally, you will have to communicate with your parents more as well. This is essential for reinforcing behaviors you want to see in your virtual classroom. One of the easiest ways to do this is to keep your grade book updated regularly. With self-grading assignment apps like TeacherMade, it is easier to keep your grades up to date. This is one of the first things parents check to monitor their child’s progress.
Free up your nights and weekends with the app that converts your traditional assignments to digital. Our technology even grades online assignments as well,