After making it through this spring with COVID-19 many teachers are asking whats next. Unfortunately there is no clear answer other than we know things are changing. Every state, city and municipality has different factors influencing decisions about fall 2020. How do we as educators deal with these changing factors when much of it is out of our hands? Looking at the behaviors of colleges and universities will provide insights into what will happen in schools. After all, when many major universities began shutting down in the spring, this set the bar for everyone else. In light of all this, I would urge you to begin reading about the concept of a "Hy Flex" classroom. This instructional model has many of the elements of flipped and blended learning. The idea is a classroom can quickly convert from face to face to online instruction. In some instances a student would have the option to choose which method they want (Not sure what teacher on the planet Earth has time to plan for this one). This concept makes me wonder if schools will adopt a more proactive shutdown approach to illness. We have all been in classroom when the flu hits and half the kids are gone. Will this model be used as a method of flexible instruction if schools shutdown again? Only time will tell. Here's a few links to better understand this trend and what may be coming to your classroom.
Inside Higher Ed: Hy Flex Courses
Educause: 7 Things you should know about the high flex classroom.
Hybrid Flexible Course Design
Plants are a great topic for middle school. I am always looking or ways to review the various groups of plants after each instruction unit. Check out this 2 minute video doodle. Its perfect to help your students review everything they have learned about this important kingdom of life. If you need more resources, check out ourPlants for Middle School series.
If you are using Canvas, rubrics are a great time saver. The following tech tip explains how to reuse rubrics in Canvas to make grading more efficient.
Recently I have been working on some Doodle Videos to help my students better understand plants. This one is geared for middle school students learning the complex fern life cycle. If you are interested in the accompanying resources, please check out my Seedless Vascular Plant Lesson for Middle School
Many of us a making online resources for our students and printable packets for those that lack internet. Here's a two tips to save you time and energy.
1. Plan out your content first. I like to create a presentation that lays out my lesson. That way if I am teaching live, recording or sending a copy home, all kids are getting similar materials.
2. Print to PDF is an easy way to take your presentations and turn them into packet forms that can be send home. The following clip will explain how this work.
During this next month I am going to be hosting a series of short tips for teaching science online. These short videos will provides quick and simple lesson I have learned overs the past decade as an online teacher and course designer.
Passion is defined as a “strong feeling of enthusiasm or excitement for something or about doing something.” Teachers make lessons come alive when they are passionate. What gets you going? Consider incorporating it into your next class. Be passionate, smile, have fun in the classroom. Your students will remember you for it.
Welcome to my Blog. This is my online home to share thoughts and life as a teacher, dad, coach, and instructional designer.
What if Jupiter was a star?