- What action(s) might you take in order to prepare for online and blended learning?
After going through the material on DX, I realized there would be many changes to online learning in the new school year. There are a few things I need to do in order to be prepared for it:
(1) For my IB courses, I need to calculate roughly how much instructional time there is and plan the units around it. IB recently announced some changes to the May 2021 exams, which is a relief, but there is still a lot of course material to complete given that we fell behind last semester. Since class time is shortened, and some students are not in Beijing, which means they will be under pressure to complete as much work as their classmates do. Therefore, I need to plan ahead and be smart about how I use the 60 minutes of class time. The blended learning model – delivering key concept online and practicing in person – is what I plan to adapt this year.
(2) For my non-IB courses, standards have been prioritized over the summer. However, I still need to talk to my team about which standards will be assessed formatively and which summatively. I also plan to incorporate more online tools for assessments and feedback. Similar to my IB courses, the blended learning model will be a huge help to delivering quality lessons with limited instructional time.
(3) Since I’m in Beijing, one of my challenges is to make sure the students who are not in Beijing receives the help they need to be successful in their learning. I need to seek more clarity from HS in this regard and develop a plan to ensure the quality of learning for all of my students.
(4) Now that we need to post by cycle, I need to establish a new planning routine where I can list all needed information for students on each Day 1. It might take some time to get used to, and I would certainly benefit from collaboration with colleagues on my team.
- Considering your previous experience with online learning, what are your instructional strengths & areas for growth?
I made sure I had a lot of face-to-face time with the students last semester and I showed care for their social emotional wellbeing during this difficult time. As a result, attendance to my Zoom lessons was high, and most students completed work on time. I also used DX as the platform for feedback, which was supplemented by individual conferences on Zoom. Lastly, I was selective about what I assessed, especially on summative assessments. To be better prepared for online learning this year, I need to try a few more digital tools for assessments and feedback, such as Flipgrid, Loom, etc. At the same time, I need to be careful with not choosing too many to overwhelm the students.
- Using the 5Cs of online learning, what goals might you set for yourself in anticipation of future online instruction?
My goal is clarify and captivate. With the new cyclic posting, I need to clarify on each Day 1 the following information, which requires a new planning routine since I used to plan by lesson.
- The learning objectives for that cycle
- Content instruction
- Zoom meeting days and times
- Details of assessments (and specify how long tasks should last)
- Timeline so that students know where they should be at any point during the cycle.
In addition, since instructional time is shortened, and some of my students are not in Beijing, I need to make sure there are enough opportunities for students to ask questions and for me to check for understanding as well as to provide useful feedback. Lastly, with the challenge of online learning, I need to select learning material that is relevant to students’ life and spark their interest in learning Chinese.
- How might you achieve these goals? Who might you reach out to for support?
First of all, colleagues in my department is a great resource for support. I can also seek help from CLCC and OOL if needed. Websites such as Edutopia are another great resources to learn from teachers around the world.
- If you had a magic wand, what might the 5Cs of online learning look like in your classroom?
Students are interested in and focused on learning. They collaborate with each other and show respect for the learning community. Learning objectives are clear, and with consistent feedback from the teacher, students are well aware of their strength and areas of growth. They are motivated to grow because of the care and support from peers and the teacher:-)