Many teachers have had to carry out their teaching remotely due to the global pandemic. This has been a huge challenge for the teachers around the world as they have had to change their way of teaching to be done remotely.
However, many teachers have not been trained to provide distance teaching and they may lack ideas and knowledge on how to plan and implement effective and motivating teaching remotely. Therefore, we created a new feature to LessonApp about distance teaching. Now LessonApp Premium has a section with key pedagogical principles of distance teaching, an example of a pedagogically smart lesson structure for distance teaching, and also several distance teaching lesson plans to browse and apply.
Distance teaching requires different type of pedagogical solutions than classroom instruction. Although the teacher can still “teach” in a traditional sense, the role and tasks of a teacher are rather different in distance teaching than in classroom instruction. Teacher’s tasks in remote teaching include more planning and guiding and less direct teaching. Teacher needs to gather relevant material (online links, quizzes, videos etc.), formulate meaningful assignments that can be done remotely, guide interaction and evaluate different assignments.
In remote teaching there is endless amount of possibilities: different learning environments, platforms, tools, applications, software, digital material, videos, multimedia presentations etc. By trying out different tools and applications it is easier to find those solutions that are suitable for teacher and as well as students.
In distance teaching teacher should focus on quality over quantity! Too many assignments can be harmful especially for students with learning difficulties, as well as to those, who are very diligent and demand a lot from themselves. The key question is: “How do I plan a remote learning experiences so, that it is suitable for learners’ skill level and competence, it does not stress out students, and it also forms a meaningful learning experience?”
Distance studying is demanding for most of the learners. Studying remotely, mostly alone and possibly from your own home, requires time management skills, self-directedness, self-regulation, responsibility and advanced studying skills. These can be challenging even for adults, let alone children. Support from parents (if possible) and teacher is crucial.
The transition to distance teaching is a learning situation for everybody. Often teachers and students are thrown to distance teaching abruptly and there is no time to proper planning. In the beginning, it takes more time and energy to learn the new ways of studying and get familiar with new technical solutions, so learning the new contents can be tough. It is essential to give time to the process and retain a growth mindset: appreciate effort, try to constantly learn (also from mistakes) and look positively into future.
Distance teaching is a challenge, but it can also be an opportunity for teachers to develop their own professional skills as well as get a new tool in their own professional toolkit.
Team LessonApp is ready to help teachers by sharing pedagogical knowledge and tips! More detailed information how to promote learning and produce better learning results in distance teaching can be found in LessonApp.