I learned five-card draw before I could read and still love a good game of poker with family and friends. I’m also the Director of Professional Learning at Teaching Channel and have closely monitored the changes in teaching and learning due to COVID-19. How, on Earth, do these two things relate? Well, I’m about to tell you where to place your chips and why. Teaching Channel has three sure bets for professional learning that could pay out big! (Insert casino noises, flashing lights and dollar signs here.)
Bet #1 – “Double Down” on Blended Learning
It appears that returning to school in the fall will be a brand-new experience for most teachers, administrators and learners. To ensure staff and student safety, schools will have to consider social distancing measures, procedures to keep common spaces clean, and even the use of face masks. Based on these changes and challenges, it’s more likely that schools will be starting the 2020-21 school year through distance or blended learning. For that reason alone, increasing your skills related to blended learning is a sure professional learning bet. Course 5097: Making the Shift to Blended Learning in Your Classroom will encourage you to set a vision, develop a roadmap, discover blended learning models, and find digital tools for engagement. Even if your school returns to a typical physical learning environment, you can use what you’ve learned to mix it up and keep students interested and motivated!
Bet #2 – I’ll “see” your tech tools and “raise” you 21st Century skills.
Given what we know about online learning and student engagement, the more tech-tools you have in your toolbox, the better! “See” those techie tools and “raise” them with the power of 21st Century learning. Doing so will ensure your students will be collaborating, communicating, thinking critically and creating in your online learning environment. Practice new uses for Flip Grid, Screencastify, Anchor, Adobe Spark, Canva and many more to engage, inspire and empower students in your online classroom. Sounds like Course 5093: Digital Tools in the Connected Classroom is a professional learning AND student learning WIN! I guess you’ll just have to split the pot.
Bet #3 – Go “All In” with Online Learning
Distance learning is the present, and likely the future, but online learning is not as simple as putting your face-to-face lesson into a learning management system for your students. There are huge topics to consider to ensure your digital teaching and learning is the best it can be. Relationship building is a must, even virtually, and determining methods to mitigate digital inequity will be necessary for educators and schools. Ensuring learner engagement from afar is paramount, and high-quality tech-based lessons will increase learning for your students. If any of these topics sound interesting or maybe needed, check out Course 5123: Teaching Online with Equity in Mind to come out on top.