5 Alternative Methods for Long Distance Learning

Everything has changed in the blink of an eye. Stores have closed. No one is advised to mingle. The world is becoming a place of fear. With all of the changes, one of our students’ constants has also been taken away: the classroom. While students may not be in our classrooms, they are still “here” and they need to learn. If your school is going into a flex learning process, what are some options you have as a teacher to ensure your students are getting the best education without you in front of them?

#1: Create a YouTube Channel
If your students have access to a computer, gaming console, phone, or smart TV they will have the ability to get onto YouTube. Put your links on your school page and teach your students how to do a variety of topics. In order to ensure students are getting something out of the videos, require them to post a comment or email you a video or response of some kind.

#2: Turn to Technology
This is one of the times our students being technologically driven is actually to our advantage. Various programs like Google Classroom and Schoology are free to use for teachers and their classes. The best part about Google Classroom is the ability for it to be used on gaming consoles. On both of these forums, teachers can post lessons, videos, and assignments. In addition, students can also submit work and teachers can give feedback and assign points.

#3: Learning Packets
If computers aren’t something that your school has, you can always turn to learning packets. A learning packet is a folder that includes notes, examples, and assignments for your students. When going to learning packets, you still have to be mindful of germs, so I would suggest having a specific drop off and pick up time that would allow people to stay in their cars. You can have a staff member available or a few available (depending on your school size) to help hand out and collect work for students.

#4: Co-Teach with Parents
One of the biggest assets you will hopefully have during this troubling time are parents. If you can connect with parents via text, phone, email, or in any way, you can give them tasks for their students to do throughout the day. No matter what a student is doing during this time is better than nothing. Plus, spending extra time with family is not a bad thing! Encourage students and parents to do something together like bake and write an equation for the amounts of each ingredient needed. Then have them send that recipe to a friend or to you along with a picture of the finished product.

#5: Go to Project-Based Learning
Being independent is going to be very important in the coming days. Designing lesson plans that are project-based will be incredibly helpful in ensuring students are still working and learning. Projects you can have your students do include: novel studies, science projects, conspiracy busters, etc. If you’re struggling to come up with project ideas, reach out to the world of TpT and don’t reinvent the wheel!

The COVID-19 virus has rocked our states and our classrooms. We need to stand together for our students and try to implement a form of normalcy for them and for ourselves. Without education, our nation will crumble; we can’t let a virus take away one of the most important parts of our society.


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