A classroom without walls

With the news of schools closing due to the pandemic threat, I’ve been prompted to think about how long my class could continue if we weren’t meeting at school.

Although not all of my students have computers at home equipped with the internet, most of them do. Those that do could visit our class wiki to download videos, PowerPoints, handouts and rubrics. The students could complete assignments and post them to the wiki. Students could have conversations about texts on there as well.

We wouldn’t be meeting face to face, but it would be a temporary classroom without walls. Those of us equipped with the right technology could meet for a while and keep the conversation and learning going without a traditional classroom to do it in (provided none of us got sick). Now let’s hope for the best.

Change: it’s inevitable

The first step to changing is realizing that change is inevitable. It is bound to happen, and as educators, we inevitably witness and adapt to small changes multiple times during a day. We adapt a plan, modify an assignment, invent a lesson on the spot. Making a BIG change, however, seems to be more daunting. For some, it is overwhelming to consider making a change in a well-established curriculum that has been used for years.

Although my department members are capable of making small changes throughout the day – probably without even realizing they are doing it – they seem overwhelmed with our shift in curriculum. Our department is making a curriculum shift, and as a new educator, I’m excited about it. I realize that change of any nature – big or small – is necessary. Change is the nature of education because our learners will never be the same. We need to grow and adapt to best meet their needs, on a hourly, daily, weekly, monthly, annually basis.

In the future, I’ll post more about the specifics of this change in approach. Anytime we make a change, big or small, it is nice to have feedback. That is what I’ll look to you for.