Ed Tech Tools to help beat the COVID Slide

Last week we talked about the impact that COVID- 19 has had on education this year. As renaissance reported, students seem to be performing well in reading, but are really starting to fall behind in math. What can we do to help students stay on track and improve learning outcomes while they learn virtually?

Reading

While there hasn’t been a notable slide in reading this year, plenty of students could still use a little extra support when it comes to literacy. Whether it is apps that make reading feel like a game, or encouraging students to use reading to follow their passions, there are plenty of tools and techniques to help students get excited about reading.

The American College of Education put together a really helpful list of their favorite free resources here.

Math:

Math has always been a difficult subject for students to learn. Without the support of teachers to explain complex and abstract theories in person, it has only gotten harder. The way math is typically taught may not translate well over screens. What can be done to help students stay engaged and involved in math learning

Use new tools: Whether it is a paid platform that encourages students to look at math in new ways, or tools that just make problems easier to solve to work through, there are tons of resources out there to help teachers and students make the most of their math lessons.

Desmos.com– free math tools

Wacom community– great place to connect and learn more about helpful tools

Alef math- extra lessons and tutoring resources

Get students invested in lessons:  recording videos that encourage students to try and solve the problems alongside educators can help them feel more involved in the process. Much like Dora the Explorer gives viewers a chance to guess the answer, recording videos that allow students to answer the question before teachers solve it with them can help them feel more involved. Additionally, teachers can encourage students to watch videos that work in more entertaining content that is fun to watch. Check out some great examples below:

SEL:

One newer concern with online learning is around Social Emotional Learning (SEL). With so many students unable to interact in person with peers, there are increasing concerns about how to teach students social skills.

Games: There are a ton of new apps and games popping up that allow students to learn more and practice SEL skills. Our personal favorite? Social Express. But don’t just take our word for it. There are a ton of different ways to help students learn social skills virtually.

Leave time to chat: One seemingly obvious thing teachers can do is make time for students to be social. Whether it is assigning break out sessions on Zoom, or even just opening chat up for a bit after a lesson, students can gain a lot from just having a little time to talk.

Host virtual clubs- many schools are still hosting clubs after school on zoom or other virtual platforms. While these activities may look a lot different, giving students a space to interact with peers who share the same passions as them can help them stay more engaged and involved in learning.  

See more examples from our recent blogs: https://varconnection.dstewart.com/2020/09/30/how-can-sel-support-students-in-todays-classrooms/   https://varconnection.dstewart.com/2020/09/23/extracurriculars-in-the-age-of-covid-19/

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