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It begins. Again.

Let’s face it, nobody really likes remote teaching whether you’re the teacher or the parent or both. We thought we’d make life a little easier for you with this one pager with bits of advice, some decent ideas, and a friendly face if you have any questions. If you have any specific questions, send us an email to hello@mash.ie 💌 and we’ll try to help you out. 🧡

😱 Where do I start?

The best place to start is where you left off in December! You have probably got your pupils set up on Google Classroom or SeeSaw or something similar and that is a great place to be! You are going to be teaching the content you’d planned but in a different way. However, on Monday, why not simply send a quick “hello” 👋🏻 and maybe ask them how their holidays went. 

Need some more help around remote learning?

Register here: https://www.esci.ie

6 simple steps...

Learning Platforms

For us, you can’t really beat SeeSaw or Google Classroom. However, we’ll give an honourable mention to Microsoft Teams. It doesn’t really matter what platform you use. It ain’t what you use, it’s the way that you use it… With that in mind, read on ->

Structure Yourself

Working remotely if completely different to working on site and you can’t just map one on to the other. Your home life may contain childcare, care of a sick relative, or a host of other things. The same goes for the families you’ll be working with. Set up a timetable for yourself: when are you going to prepare your lessons, when are you going to upload any content you have produced, why are you going to meet your pupils on Zoom, when are you going to assess and correct work, and most importantly, when are you going to stop! 

Take care of

Sample Timetable to Download

Preparing your lessons

Lots of us feel uncomfortable about being on camera. If we didn’t, sure we’d be following in Saoirse Ronan’s footsteps in Hollywood, right? 😂 When it comes to explaining content, while it’s nice for the children to see your face, you really don’t have to be on screen if you don’t want to. All you really need is your phone. Hold it over a textbook, some resources or point it at a portable whiteboard and start explaining what you’d like the kids to learn. If you make a mistake, don’t worry, this really isn’t Hollywood, Saoirse. Ignore it or, if you can’t, hit stop, and start again.

Best tools for recording content

YouTube

Good old YouTube! Get on your phone, record a video. Fire up the app and upload it - done!

Screencastify

This is our favourite Screen recording tool. 5 minutes recording is free and you can upload your recordings to your YouTube channel. Click and go!

Flipgrid

Want to get interactive? Record yourself asking a simple question and children can record their feedback. Simple, short and very effective.

What about LIVE teaching?

What about live teaching? What about live lessons? Why can't we have live classes?

It probably doesn’t matter what we say but we’ll say it anyway. Despite the obsession from certain quarters, live video teaching at primary level is not effective. Read our blog post for reasons why.

Some TV Tips

Sometimes TV can be educational and there’s absolutely no harm as a teacher to use some of the resources on TV shows to base your lesson plans on. The RTE School Hub is a really good starting point. As well as having lots of lesson, it also has the advantage of being Irish. If you’re looking for more, BBC are also running their own school TV shows daily on CBBC.

Virtual School Assembly

Many schools do a weekly assembly in normal times and it’s really easy to transfer it to a virtual environment using Zoom or any other video conferencing app. Simon’s school was the first in the country to offer this. In this video, he shares some tips

Online Assessment

There’s nothing worse than trying to correct pages of textbooks especially when they are photographs of pages of textbooks! While most teachers have a variety of methodologies for assessment, correcting written work forms part of it. However, if you’re sick of deciphering blurry photographed pages, fear not! Why not try creating online self-correcting quizzes? Not only will you be able to read the answers, they’ll save you a heap of time. We could recommend you a heap of them but WE LOVE GOOGLE FORMS! Not only does it integrate beautifully with Google Classroom, it’s really easy to use. Who better to explain than the most famous YouTube teacher in the word? ▶️ ▶️ ▶️ 

Check out

Kitchen Table Stations

If you have a kitchen table in your house, it’s probably become a desk for your child. We thought of a simple idea for our own son which was to put his tasks for the day around the table so there was one task in front of each chair. His job was to start on one chair and move around the table until he completed every activity. We tried to make sure there was a good mix of activities and we included some challenges with Lego and painting and we also got him a glockenspiel to learn a few tunes. You can see some of our ideas on either:

  • https://www.instagram.com/explore/tags/kitchentablestations/ or
  • https://www.instagram.com/explore/tags/kitchentablestation/