“Hybrid learning can be a best of both worlds, or a worst of both worlds reality,” said Professor Bree Dusseault, University of Washington, Washington, USA “At best, schools can keep students safe. At worst, teachers are forced to cut corners on instruction.” Teacher Surveys by EdWeek showed how Schools struggle to transition students seamlessly from the classroom to the living room and back again.
At the same time equity gaps are widening along racial lines. “The trickiest part has been getting students to complete assignments at home, where they might have other responsibilities like child care or a part-time job” said Scott Clayton, the Principal at Scofield Magnet Middle School, Connecticut, USA. Students who are learning at home get left behind compared with students who choose to spend at least some time in person.
Make up for lost learning time using these 6 tips for stress-free hybrid learning.
“Schools have struggled to balance investments in personal protective equipment with the technology and professional development necessary to reach students who will be learning at home part-time or full-time” said Professor Bree Dusseault from the University of Washington.
Jennifer Atkins, a 7th grade English teacher of Victoria Independent School District, Texas, USA posts textbook PDFs online because some students don’t have the book at home, even though the school set up times for parents to pick up the books. Grading takes longer because she has to look at some hard copies and then log in online for the rest.
It’s nothing short of exhausting, it’s basically like teaching two different classes at the same time in one class period.
Jennifer Atkins, Grade 7 English Teacher
Victoria Independent School District
Teachers have had to adjust to a curriculum that must be more streamlined than usual at Northern Lehigh School District (NLSD), Pennsylvania, USA where students attend in-person 2 days a week and online the other 3 days.
District leaders have urged teachers to consider which aspects of the learning material are essential and which could be optional.
We don’t want the curriculum to become a barrier to achieving success, we need to double down on our efforts to make [students] active participants
“You’re going to go through different iterations constantly” Superintendent Matthew Link said “Don’t feel bad if you have to change something that you thought was the answer.”
What changes can help districts make up for lost learning time? The recommendations from University of Washington Center for Reinventing Public Education include:
- Individualized 3 year plan: To address each students academic, social, and emotional needs. To collect data on grade-level progress and accelerate mastery of priority grade-level curriculum. For example, adapting with below grade level assignments even if the student had demonstrated some success on grade-level curriculum.
- Re-engage marginalized students: Lower dropout rates were found in schools that recruited, supported, and retained educators of colour. Including culturally responsive tasks in assignments and projects.
- Accelerate foundations in math and literacy: Using tutoring, extended learning time, or formative feedback such as a NUITEQ Snowflake poll that pinpoints key areas of improvement.
- Quality remote option: Guided Small learning cohorts can reduce some of the downsides of remote learning including personal relationships, enrichment programming, and connection even after the school year.
- Prioritize content mastery: This disrupted moment is also one of the biggest opportunities for shifting policy and practice in education. Parents are more open to their children attending something other than brick-and-mortar schools. Some examples include cooperation with homeschooling that wraps NUITEQ Snowflake’s active adaptive curriculum with the social and emotional needs of students.
- Support families: by making at-home training available, take-home books, family engagement programs, and strategies to regularly communicate with teachers, especially around reading.
Finding lesson plans that can immediately differentiate with kids is one of the hardest parts of our job. And with NUITEQ Snowflake, we solved this problem.
Katie Budinger, Science Teacher
Lowell Bridge School
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