#8 – Develop Efficient and Effective Practices and Mindsets for Teaching Remotely

Unpacking Education October 7, 2020 20 min

It’s the start of the school year, and we are already seeing teachers across the country who are exhausted beyond measure. The challenges of teaching during a global pandemic seem to become more daunting by the day. How can we work together to support each other in finding strategies that will help minimize the increased workload that comes with teaching one or more remote-learning models?

Join our Digital Learning Specialists as they share three key strategies for managing a remote-teaching workload, with tips for how to effectively plan lessons that will work across teaching models, provide meaningful feedback to students, and develop a streamlined process to assign grades.

Below, you will find resources and tips shared during the podcast to support your virtual-teaching goals.

Paul Beckermann
PreK-12 Digital Learning Specialist
Rena Clark
Digital Learning Coach
Pamela Beckermann
PreK-12 Digital Learning Specialist

In my research I found that the core of authenticity is the courage to be imperfect, vulnerable, and to set boundaries.

Brené Brown


In this week’s episode, we discuss the following strategies and resources that are available on AVID Open Access for you to explore in more depth.

Develop Effective and Efficient Practices for Managing Your Teaching Workload

Teachers are rising to the challenge of meeting their students’ needs, as the landscape around them shifts daily. The experience has been both daunting and draining, with many teachers reaching out to their Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) and Professional Learning Networks (PLNs) for support. A key concern has been workload, as teachers juggle multiple remote-learning models. The following three steps will help you continue to be highly effective while also maximizing efficiency.

Strategies for Managing Your Teaching Workload

  1. Planning: Start by planning for 100% remote learning and tweak your lessons for what it will look like in person to help you shift quickly when necessary. Even if your classes are not starting in a remote setting, by developing lessons for remote learning, you are helping your students develop the routines and skills they need to succeed in a virtual-learning environment.
    • Tip! Divide and conquer. Use your PLC. If you don’t have a PLC in your building, find a PLN. It is so important to have a community or network that is available to help with resource development, inspiration, and support. Share what you create with your teacher group. Borrow what you need from their creations and update the resource to meet your needs. #BetterTogether
  1. Feedback: Use audio and video to provide formative feedback for your students. This approach is great for even your youngest learners. Explore Talk&Comment (Tips), a Google extension that allows you to paste your audio comments into documents, websites, or the comment field in Google Docs. Consider Loom (Tips) or Flip (Tips) to provide students with video feedback that is easy to personalize for each student.
    • Incorporate peer feedback. When students are able to teach back their learning to peers, you can be assured that they have mastered the content. In addition, peer feedback gives students voice, engaging them in the learning process. Scaffold peer feedback by providing students with rubrics and sentence stems to use as guidelines.
    • Automate the assessment. While this approach takes time to set up, it pays dividends in results. You are able to analyze the data in real time to inform instruction.
  1. Grading: Provide most of your feedback on formative assessments. As blended learning coach and education consultant Dr. Catlin Tucker notes, “Don’t spend 90% of your energy/time giving feedback on [the] finished product, put that 90% into giving students feedback as they work!”
    • Create portfolios of work. Provide students with repeated opportunities to practice their learning and provide formative feedback along the way. Have students pick the best examples from their portfolio to be graded. The pressure is off both you and your students, as you shift the focus away from a high-stakes, summative assessment. Moreover, students have an opportunity to practice a growth mindset by evaluating what is “quality” work and iterating on their learning process.