Over 18 years of teaching, I have developed techniques and strategies for getting my students engaged in and loving history. Everything is based on learning in collaborative groups that foster small risk taking within a small group that eventually blossoms into whole-class level confidence for shy or typically lower achieving students. A classroom where we act things out, do group-based warm ups, learning activities, and review games using a variety of collaborative strategies. Everything was a well-oiled, smoothly running, Marzano-based interactive and inclusive machine that engaged the vast majority of my students. Oh, and no computers - everything we did was pencil and paper based.
Then Friday, March 13th happened. Like many of you, the end of the school year was just survival mode for me. We were directed to provide students with ungraded work as best we could and we'd be back to normal by September.
Well, it's November, and almost NOTHING is back to normal. I know some schools are fully remote, some are hybrid and some are fully face to face. My district offers face to face instruction for families that need/prefer it as well as a fully virtual option. The end result is that instead of having 115ish students, I have around 75 or so for face to face instruction spread across 4 classrooms that they stay in all day long while us teachers rotate every hour.
The other day, I called my dad and he asked how it was going. The only thing that came to mind was, "It's hard. Absolutely everything is different," Although I'm getting more comfortable with things, I wouldn't say things are getting easier, I'd say I'm getting tougher. I'm starting to find some solutions to problems caused by my new "COVID Classroom" that I will be sharing here in the coming weeks. I hope they help.
In the meantime, check out my store for some great Social Studies resources (over 70 of which are Google-based and able to be shared through Google Classroom), and if you have any tips or ideas that might help others, please leave them in the comments section.
I'm a 14 year veteran teacher that loves teaching, coaching, writing, and my family.