Building positive relationships is such an integral part of student learning and it can be forgotten about so quickly when you aren’t seeing your class each day. Keep your positive relationships alive by:
using an app or extension, such as Mote, to record yourself reading the task and embed it in Google Slides. This also makes it easier for the students to understand the task.
recording your lessons using a webcam. Screencastify makes this so easy!
leaving feedback using audio comments. (I provide feedback on Seesaw using audio comments and the students/parents also reply using audio comments. It makes my day! Mote is also great for leaving audio feedback!)
making regular phone calls to the students to check in.
Fun Class Zoom Sessions
Schedule FUN Zoom sessions with your class. Don’t get caught up in everything and forget to have fun! The class Zoom sessions might be the most exciting thing the students do all day!
Provide time for them to say hello and goodbye to each other.
Play fun games.
Scavenger hunts, directed drawing and I spy are just some ideas!
Don’t forget to celebrate the amazing effort and hard work you are noticing from your students. Throughout the week I send out personalised awards to the students who have been working really hard. This helps the students who receive the award to feel recognised and also encourages them to continue, while also encouraging those who aren’t putting in as much effort to complete their work.
Click here for stickers I made that you can purchase and use during online learning. When you prasie hard work and effort, you are fostering a growth mindset.
Bitmoji is also a great way to motivate the students and personalise your feedback.
Make Learning Fun
Remember to stretch your lessons out – what you normally might teach in one or two lessons might need to be taught across three or four lessons. Break your lessons into smaller lessons or allow your students to meet the outcome in different and fun ways.
I encouraged the students to make each animal we learnt about in our English and Science lessons using materials they had at home.
Use wordwall.net to create fun games and help the students revise what they have learnt.
Set Daily Challenges
Each day, my grade partners and I set a daily challenge for our students and encourage them to send us photos of them completing the challenge via Seesaw. We also share a photo of ourselves completing the challenges. This brings a little fun and helps to spice up the monotony!
leave a kind note for someone in your family to find.
read in a comfortable spot.
find something tiny.
find something orange.
dress up as a superhero.
wear your favourite clothes.
I hope there is something you can take away from this post. I’d love to know what you are doing to keep your students motivated during online learning!
If you aren’t a teacher who strives for perfection, I bet you know a few that do. The perfect classroom door? The perfect classroom display? The perfect class? The perfect lesson? Why are so many teachers obsessed with perfection?
“Perfection is an illusion and those who seek perfection will find themselves unfulfilled their whole lives.”
Perfection is unattainable and constantly seeking it can be unhealthy, yet so many people wear perfectionism as a badge of honour. The goal should never be perfection, instead the focus should be on growth. When you consistently focus on growth and learn from your mistakes, you evolve.
To focus on growth:
Take some time to set some goals for yourself.
What do you need and/or want to get better at?
Take small steps each day or week to work towards them.
Reflect on your progress regularly.
Make necessary changes.
Once you achieve a goal, set a new one. How many goals you achieve and how quickly you achieve them isn’t the point – what matters is that you are continually growing and that you are better than you were the day before. Good teachers are always learning and setting goals without even realising it.
“Every success story is a tale of constant adaption, revision and change.”
Don’t be discouraged if you have a few setbacks or take longer to achieve a goal than you expected. Take it in your stride and keep moving forward, no matter how slowly. Slow progress is still progress and is better than no progress at all.
“Perfection is not a standard … it’s an obstacle.”
So, what are you waiting for? Don’t waste another second striving for perfection – embrace imperfection and continuous improvement instead.
I think most people would agree that it is important to foster creativity in our students.
We would like our students to:
use creativity in all subject areas
think outside the box and problem solve.
Creativity is what makes the above points possible. But what about teachers? Should creativity be fostered in teachers? How often are teachers being told what to do? How often are teachers given prescribed program templates and ways of teaching? Of course, there are certain rules that all teachers must follow, however it is important that teachers are able to be creative in order to feel accomplished, express themselves and enjoy their work. Does it matter that one program looks different from another as long as the important elements are there? Too often, teachers are expected to think the same as those around them and their creativity is being stifled.
We don’t want our students to behave like robots and produce the exact same work … so why do we expect cookie-cutter teachers?
We want our teachers to take risks and not be afraid to make mistakes. Providing rigid structures for teachers to work within stifles their creativity and creates a culture of fear.
Creativity can be learned, even though a lot of people tend to think you are either creative or you aren’t. It is time we teach teachers to embrace the creativity within. After all, how can we expect teachers to foster creativity in students when they are unable to be creative themselves?