Some families are turning to tutoring programs to help prevent what some call the "COVID-19 slide," or learning loss stemming from prolonged school closures. One program is the Tennessee Tutoring Corps, which places college students with paid opportunities to tutor students in kindergarten through sixth grade.
A Georgia school district reports that about 260 employees have had positive tests for or exposure to COVID-19. The news comes as the district prepares to resume online learning later this month and amid calls from some in the community to reopen to in-person instruction.
Reading aloud with students not only helps develop reading skills, it can build strong bonds between the participants, writes Mark West, a professor and literacy specialist from the University of North Carolina. West writes in this commentary that reading aloud gives students a chance to talk about their thoughts and feelings as they identify with characters in the story.
A trip to the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C., opened the eyes of some Colorado students, as they realized just how much they had never learned about Black history. Zyeria Johnson, who was at the time a senior at Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Early College, and other students began working with Principal Kimberly Grayson to expand what is taught in classes.
Green screens can help to engage students in learning, writes Justine Bruyere, a lecturer at Peabody College, Vanderbilt University. In this blog post, Bruyere offers suggestions to help teachers integrate the technology, including the tools needed and tips to help create backgrounds.
Teachers say they are crowdsourcing or purchasing their own supplies -- including disinfectants and individual items that students typically would share -- as they prepare to safely return to in-person learning. Seventy-four percent of teachers surveyed in June also reported purchasing out of their own pockets printing supplies for remote instruction, and 41% bought supplies to mail materials to students.
Recognizing that students who have severe emotional outbursts may be triggered by a previous trauma, some Oklahoma elementary-school teachers developed the Alternative Therapeutic Learning Academic Setting classroom. First-grade teacher Heather Boyle explains how she helped one student who acted out when overwhelmed by math problems.
Maryland teacher Allison Engel worked to adapt remote instruction for her students with special needs, by collaborating with colleagues on an adjusted curriculum that included educational videos and games. Engel credited increased contact with colleagues through phone calls and email and the dedication of the school community to fend off regression in the students' learning.
A program that offers students homework hints -- crowdsourced by teachers -- has helped students answer problems correctly in 58% of cases, compared with 54% for those without access to the hints, according to a forthcoming study. Neil Heffernan, a professor at Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Massachusetts who established the program, says the next step is to determine whether the hints help students complete more math homework, rather than students giving up if they get stuck.
Michael Essien, principal at Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Academic Middle School in San Francisco, says when the school reopens to students, he plans to make them part of the conversation about expectations and how to safely learn. Students will help co-construct discipline at the school, so "we're not disciplining you, we're reminding you of what you wanted," Essien says.