The global outbreak of COVID-19 has meant that all Irish teachers must move their teaching from the classroom to their home. This requires a massive shift in the way you teach and the way your students learn, and it definitely isn't an easy transition for everyone.
We've already created a blog for students on how to learn and study from home (check it out here to share with your students!), but this blog is just for teachers. Below you can read & watch Luke, Studyclix co-founder and Biology Teacher, as he tells us which online tools he uses and how you can use them in your teaching for the coming weeks.
Here at Studyclix we have been working as a “remote” company for the past 8 years with each of our staff members working from different parts of Ireland and around the world. As a teacher I have tried, whenever possible, to utilise online tools in my teaching and have found for the most part, that students find it a positive learning experience. Below, I want to share with you some practical tools that I think teachers may find helpful in this new world of distance learning we find ourselves in:
1. Loom Screen Recorder
Remote teaching requires much more preparation time to get lessons ready and to set students work. As a result, it can be hard to give students as much feedback on their work as you would like. Rather than writing lengthy, time-consuming emails. Check out Loom which is a free screen sharing software. You simply install Loom as a plugin to Chrome and then press record and it records your screen as well as your voice. Once you stop recording it gives you a share URL that you can give to your students. It’s great for quickly giving feedback on a student’s work or pre recording instructions that you want to send on, and it can all be done at a time that suits your daily schedule.
2. Zoom Video Conferencing
In these anxious times, it can be reassuring for students to see you and their classmates to restore at least some semblance of normality. There are plenty of options out there for live video calls including Google Hangouts, Skype and Zoom.
We have tried them all over the years and settled on Zoom (Zoom.us) as the most reliable option. Zoom is also offering free upgraded access to educators at the moment in response to the crisis. Find out more about their offer by clicking here.
(This article also explains how to keep your online Zoom classrooms secure)
3. Studyclix Quiz Builder
Quiz Builder is a new feature we recently launched that lets you easily build an interactive quiz in your chosen topics using our database of quiz questions. You then share your custom quiz with your class via a share-URL and your students each take the quiz at home. You can access all the student’s results on your results page as well as a full breakdown of how your class is doing in each of the various topics. Importantly, each student also has access to their own results so makes a great formative assessment exercise. Find out more here.
4. Studyclix Exam Builder
Exam Builder allows you to create worksheets using past Junior or Leaving Cert questions in any topic in your subject. You can download these as pdfs and send them to your students via email or through your learning management system (Google Classroom/Office 365 etc). Set them a deadline and then send them on the solution sheet afterwards (we give you that too) so your students can self-correct their work.
Hopefully with these tools your online teaching can get that bit easier. Feel free to get in touch with us at any time if you have any questions or feedback, we're here to help.
Luke & the Studyclix team