Many schools are using a simultaneous learning approach, where teachers work with all students, both in person and online, at the same time. However, writes The 74 contributor Beth Rabbitt, despite hard work and good intentions, full-time, simultaneous learning is not a best practice.
Online models are least effective when teachers try to engage learners from a distance while managing an in-person classroom, and they pose a challenge of epic proportions for educators.
There are ways of managing hybrid schooling so that rarely will two cohorts working across contexts (distance and non) engage for an entire day — or even an entire lesson — at the same time. Teachers, and the leaders setting up ground rules for teaching, should consider which tasks, activities and means of access (be they synchronous or asynchronous, in-person or online) are best suited for students working in different environments at which times.
But what if you’re stuck with simultaneous learning? Rabbit offers four big takeaways for thinking about how to better bridge the home-classroom engagement gap:
- Take a “remote-first” approach to organizing materials and ways of communicating and working.
- Double down on community and culture.
- Make lessons dynamic.
- Motivate every person.