For teachers the personal touch will be almost lost. For students the mentoring and special personality of a teacher that sparks a student’s interest. When I was in high school I was only interested in Sports, Track and Field, Tennis, and Wrestling. I admit the fatigue from being an athlete took it’s toll on my grades. I was often to tired to study at night and fell asleep with the text book on my lap.
Now we enter an age of a pandemic virus that has fooled us. We thought it was the flu. We never reacted fast enough and the virus spread like wildfire. Sadly, schools had to shut down. The socialization of schooling went down the drain while we figure what we needed to do to prevent the spread of the virus.
Now we know. The virus is not going away easily. Schools have to open, but under what conditions? Is our favorite teacher outdate by online education? What about our Principals are they trained to help online teachers?
Teachers greatest tool is empathy and personal touches in giving students personal advice by modeling and taking time to look out for students. Looking at students across a computer screen does not feel as warm as a real classroom, but like it or not it is the future for now despite the shortcomings. How can teachers make online teaching work for them? The answer is to take advantage of technology. Offer chat sessions for students outside of class hours. Send e-mail often to student. Use special greeting card programs to send birthday wishes and other encourage. Use text message when necessary. Respond quickly to student questions. Make online instruction an extension of your personality and teachers may in the long run enjoy online instruction. Use Powerpoint, but include music and animation and special effects to get the students attention. Link to YouTube videos and let students watch these documentary video and learn better than what you can tell them. Teachers tell personal stories and online instruction should be no different.
As to student, what do they do. Go with the flow is the motto. Learn to change. Learn to adapt. Be glad you have someone guiding you through the learning process. Yes you aren’t going to get to gawk at the good looking girl or guy in the second row. No lockers, no bathroom breaks, no cafe food are all positives you leave behind in the traditional school building. No the learning lab is your bedroom or living room. Go forward and tackle the future with motivation. Remember you can learn anything if you put your mind to it and focus.
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