Distance Learning Considerations


  • Connection over content
  • Less is more with Depth, Richness and High Cognitive Demand
  • Designed flexibility
  • Monitor, evaluate, and respond

Following are considerations teachers should follow in planning for activities when engaged in distance learning for a prolonged period of time:

1. Plan for daily meaningful interaction with students and provide students equitable access to learning materials.

  • Plan with other staff (interventionists, paraprofessionals, counselors/student advocates, sped staff, EL staff, GEL) to support:
    — Accommodations & Modifications
    — Mental Health Support

2. Plan for Independent Learning.
Design learning experiences that are manageable by students working independently and connected to the learning progression. One of the positive outcomes of distance learning is that students can become more competent, independent learners as appropriate to the level of the student. Learning should not require sustained attention by parents. 

  • For primary grades:
    — Use programs and activities that are familiar to families.
    — Include ideas for brain breaks
    — Include choice activities that are relevant to the learning progression for parent and student flexibility.

3. Anticipate Time Requirements.
Recognizing that students learn at different paces, especially in an independent context, it is important to consider students who you picture as struggling through the assignment and design activities that they can complete in the time they would have been with you in class.  

4. Consistent Schedule.
Create schedules that are consistent for students and families.  Examples would be to post by the same time every day and communicate that with families, or have a daily meeting at the same time.  

5. Be present on Schoology and email during your scheduled work day.
Timely interaction between students with staff and other students is a vital part of this and a strength of Schoology.

6. Personalize Learning.
As you know, core to our strategic direction is developing a system that can personalize a program for every student. You will picture students for whom the work you are planning will be too challenging without the support they normally receive in your classroom.  Creating a customized program for cases such as these is critical.  As part of this personalization, consider flexible deadlines and student choice in activities.

7. Communicate. 
Develop common expectations and common communications by grade-level/team/department.  When everyone can easily access the information they need to be successful, students and families can focus on the learning.  Develop consistent protocols for posting assignments on Schoology by school.

8. Student with Special Needs. 
General education teachers will communicate with case managers to ensure accommodations and modifications are being addressed during distance learning.