“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step”
This is a saying which is believed to have originated from a famous Chinese proverb from the Dao De Jing ascribed to Laozi: every long journey, or difficult task begins with one first step.
Reflections from others
What can we learn from those who have taken first steps in distance learning, where teachers are supporting, encouraging and teaching their learners from a distance through the use of digital technology?
Listen to this episode of the Wired Educator podcast to hear from teacher Stephanie Castle about her experience as an educator in Shanghai, during the initial COVID-19 outbreak in China, about remote instruction and learning as Stephanie and her colleagues have been instructing remotely longer than many other teachers
A new episode of The Wired Educator Podcast just went live. ⚡️🎧⚡️
— Wired Educator (@WiredEducator) April 10, 2020
Maintaining professional development activities is more important than ever to help teachers hit the five essentials needed for high-quality lessons, whether delivered remotely or in class. My latest piece for @TesScotland /@tes – https://t.co/BXvbMs5Sbf
— Ollie Bray (@olliebray) April 26, 2020
I've assembled, with others, some help on online learning, building on what we have learned in 30+ successful years of online projects in schools & higher ed https://t.co/z5KU0UyZIr I hope you'll find it useful as we all move to more nuanced models of #llearningonline #COVID__19
— prof stephen heppell (@stephenheppell) May 1, 2020
“Effective remote and digital learning” – a concise document by the West Partnership Regional Improvement Collaborative clearly setting out the rationale for digital distance learning, defining terms, making reference to research and experiences elsewhere and providing tips and strategies for educators as well as parents/carers.
Read some of the research on effective remote and digital learning https://t.co/8QSgAIhdLn
— West Partnership (@wp_education) May 26, 2020
Tips for Teaching Online – 12 logistical tips to improve clarity and communication, and to support teaching and learning online. https://t.co/bhz6hmrZJR
— Lisa Anne Floyd (@lisaannefloyd) April 14, 2020
The reflections at this link, and lessons learned from experiences gained, by primary teacher Marc Andrew may be helpful in looking at similarities for teachers in their own circumstances and to support reflection in choices as practice develops.
For anyone back at school this week here are my humble musings on delivering distance learning https://t.co/NBgGsij3Mp
— Marc Andrew (@MrAndrewTeacher) April 13, 2020
This diary of teacher reflecting on their journey with remote learning may provide echoes for many
This is not the time to raise expectations. Instead, we need to simplify learning & encourage authentic connections. I finally got some of my thoughts onto a graphic and into a website. I hope it makes sense and helps in some small way. https://t.co/KlF1bv5Dok #remotelearning pic.twitter.com/A0K5QhbeV2
— Andi McNair (@mcnairan3) April 8, 2020
Continuous learning doesn't mean reinventing the wheel or turning everything upside down. The focus should be on learning, relationship, and wellbeing. Be kind to yourself and others! Here are some tips that might help, more to follow in the coming days. pic.twitter.com/KEemmzt2Ki
— Michael Ha (@MichaelHaEDU) March 26, 2020
Michel Girard shared this visual graphic about distance learning – highlighting the opportunities afforded by teachers sharing ideas through a professional learning network such as available using Twitter and following the hashtag #MSFTEduChat
Do you need / want to share experiences about #RemoteLearning Join #MSFTEduChat on April 21st @MicrosoftEDU #MicrosoftEdu
Thanks to @LuiseFreese for this #beautiful heart @MicrosoftTeams pic.twitter.com/hLxlEWCMhz
— themoat Michel Girard (@theMoat) April 11, 2020
— Lee Araoz (@LeeAraoz) March 29, 2020
What does research say about distance learning?
This link to an article by Dr Michael Harvey provides references for evidence-based approaches to maximize the impact of online teaching based around the science of learning research centre at the University of Queensland. This highlights a number of approaches including “that a combination of relevant visual images and speaking to the images as prompts greatly enhances learning,” and suggests that in an an online environment “providing learners with predictable presentation formats with text, subheadings, and images in the same locations will improve learner focus.” The “adoption of a spiral curriculum can also help” where it’s “not simply the repetition of a topic taught. It requires also the deepening of it, with each successive return to concepts building on the previous one.” Dr Michael Harvey can be found on Twitter at @Dr_Harves
The @EducEndowFoundn has conducted a rapid review of remote learning to explore the best evidence & implications for schools during the Covid-19 crisis.
— Alex Quigley (@HuntingEnglish) April 22, 2020
How can you smoothly transition to (part) digital learning? We asked the experts! @KSThakral and @abhimanyujakhar give advice and share their perspectives on the subject: https://t.co/mPEh1rs8v5#digitalresources #education #onlinelearning #expertadvice #teacheradvice pic.twitter.com/aZh0g83hYP
— Mangahigh (@Mangahigh) May 21, 2020
What online courses will help prepare for and develop distance learning?
Staying connected with remote learning through Microsoft Teams and Office 365. This free online course will help with understanding the difference between remote learning and online learning, look at evaluating considerations, explore options for continuing the learning and connections with your pupils, how to establish routines and develop workspaces that foster learning, and reflect on how to incorporate your school traditions and develop connections. Sign in with your Glow email address so that you can receive a certificate, badge and transcript of what has been undertaken.
Keeping Students engaged: Building strong student/teacher connections in a remote learning environment – a free online course providing information about the use of Microsoft Teams to develop remote learning experiences, how to create a class Teams call, use of pre-recorded lessons, assessment tools available in remote learning and how Assignments and Grades in Teams support your review process, as well as how OneNote Class Notebook can enhance your they way you share resources with pupils as well as evaluate their understanding. Sign in with your Glow email address so that you can receive a certificate, badge and transcript of what has been undertaken.
Accessibility, Special Education, and online learning: Supporting equity in a remote learning environment – a free online course about supporting equity in a remote learning environment, providing tips for ways to make content accessible for all pupils, and to help pupils transition to remote learning . Sign in with your Glow email address so that you can receive a certificate, badge and transcript of what has been undertaken.