That’s it. We are at home; we can’t go outside (I live in Italy) unless we have to buy groceries or medicines.
School are being closed since the beginning of March, and we don’t know when and if will open again.
I’m locked at my place and I’m scared, I have to admit. I’m afraid for my family, my parents are not so young and I have some health issues: due to brest cancer three years ago I did chemo, two years ago I was hit by a landslide and spent a couple of weeks more dead than alive, in November I fell and broke my shoulder; I feel all the symptoms at least ten times per day.
I’m afraid for my country, what will happen to us when things will go back to normal?
I’m afraid for my students. They are all enough to understand what is happening, but maybe not old enough to fully understand.
As a teacher and as a mother I feel that we can’t abandon them. We need to be by their side and help them, but in order to do that we have to change.
We need to let the kids learn in a different way. I do believe that is more difficult for us than for them. They are a connected generation, they know how to use pcs, smartphones and tablets better than us, so we don’t need to let the kids learn in a different way, but we need to learn how to teach them in a different way.
I took one of my resources and recorded a video for my students.
You can do the same, sending them the Power Point presentation or adding voice and comment, as I did.
Take a look here:
To do that I prepared a lesson about linear equations using Power Point, than I used Screenocast, it is free if you record 15 minutes video, and I added voice and hand written notations.
If you need a quick tutorial about how to use screenocast, you can find it here:
It was not so easy for me to record the voice, mostly because I’m Italian and, besides my funny accent I mispronounced few words, so I had to do it again, but at the end I did it.
If you are not online with your students, I would say this is a good solution, but if you have the chance it’s better an online lesson.
You can use the Power Point presentation and interact with the kids, explain and write on the presentation.
I use zoom https://zoom.us/, it’s free and easy, you also have the possibility to record your session, so if a student is absent you can send the lesson to him.
I prepare the Power Point and send to them, asking to study and solve some easy exercises, then I see them online, I explain the topic and we move to more challenging exercises.
I’m doing lessons with my classes and I have to say, I like it. My students seem to be engaged, they participate and follow, I can can mute them all, so they can’t interrupt an explanations asking if yesterday I went to the hair dresser (hair dresser are closed right now, by the way), but they listen till the end, and then questions are smart.
I also created a google form where they can ask questions, so if it’s something that might concern everybody I answer during the lesson, if not I simply send a message to the kid who asked the question. in this way they are not afraid to ask, I like it and they seem to like it too.
A problem I’m struggling with is testing the students. I’m trying to see if I can find a way to test them, I created some tests using google form and I’ll try with my students. I’ll write something about it as soon as I have done it.
You can find my test here,
I like it, but I’m struggling to find a way for the kids not to cheat. I also found a bunch of websites that offer tests online.
I’m going to take a look at them, and then I’ll let you know, in the next post.
I know it’s a difficult time, and I wish we can get back to normal as soon as possible, but I also think that we all should try to make the best of this period, and possibly try to find something good.
I hope that you all are safe at home.