What did you learn during the remote teaching that will help you this year?

Our experience this past spring and summer taught us a lot about remote learning, giving us new ways of thinking about education. We asked our teachers to share some of what they learned.
Some themes that emerged include student growth in self-reliance, the importance of simplifying instruction, focus on social-emotional learning and connection with one another, and learning how to use new tools, especially ones that engage students in new and unusual ways.

I learned that students are highly capable of becoming independent, self-motivated learners. I also learned that the online google classroom is a wonderful tool for organizing assignments and is an efficient classroom records management tool. I will certainly use this mindset for teaching this year as well as continue to use the google classroom to inform students and organize their classwork.
- Melinda Noirot-Poon – English teacher, NY campus

Remote learning cultivated my ability to adapt lessons to small place settings, adjust activities to ones with little or no equipment, that I can follow a student’s interest and develop plans accordingly, and increase creativity to spark interest, excitement and commitment. I was able to create an online community and communicate with them effectively.
Jack Winters - PE coach – NY and NJ campuses

I learned how to create, edit, and apply new content from tools such as Google Classroom, Zoom, and Powerpoint. I also showed me how technical skills, organization and individual responsibility can have a large impact on learning.
Alejandro Monedero- Spanish teacher, NJ campus

I was surprised at how students were able to meet the high expectations I set for them. though we were not in a usual classroom setting, they took responsibility for their learning and met ambitious goals independently. I learned that our students are self-motivated and invested in their own learning.
Christopher Recio – English teacher, NJ campus

During remote learning, I learned how to make interactive videos and adapt many activities to the online format. I also learned how adaptable our students can be and was impressed with their ability to move online, and now coming to school using the new safe social distance measures.
Paula Olarte – Spanish teacher, NY campus

I learned that it is very important to have interactions with students, providing enough time for them to talk and share. I also found websites with interactive games for older students. I liked the combination of Google classroom and Zoom, and prepared more materials than needed to be able to be flexible based on how the learning progresses.
Mandy Xiang - Mandarin teacher, NY campus

During the remote learning I learned that students really enjoy speaking and sharing stories with each other. I was impressed at how active participants they were – all of which build speaking skills!
Michelle Salazar – Spanish teacher, NJ campus

My experience reminded me of the value of social emotional learning and how resilient students are. Students were able to adapt quickly and excel because of the social-emotional work done in the classroom. Conversely, students who struggled had situations in which they were impacted socially emotionally. I look forward to incorporating social-emotional learning to set my up for students for success.
Natalia Rodriguez – English teacher, NY campus

I saw firsthand how important engagement is. When I can’t see them in person, its important to tailor the content and engage them as much as possible.
Ying Tso – Mandarin teacher, NJ campus

Last spring, I taught kindergarten remotely. I learned that the key was to stay connected with the students and the parents. Some of my students experienced sadness and loneliness during the days they were home. Some students became shy and did not flourish or maintain an emotional level of social confidence amongst their peers during zoom meetings. I initiated one on one meetings even if it meant doing so outside school hours. Building a rapport with the students is foundational and key, in connecting with them as you teach, and instilling in them the necessary skills for emotional and academic growth.
Marie Fuentes – English teacher, NY campus

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