How has technology changed communication in business and within our families? Tools such as Skype, Microsoft Teams, FaceTime, and even texting allow us to feel connected to fellow human beings more than ever, so the concept of social distancing is really not so distant.
In education, the idea of students learning the same material at different rates is nothing new, but the digital age expands the boundaries of traditional classrooms to include learning at different times and locations. Welcome to asynchronous learning!
Also known as Location Independent Learning or Distance Learning, educators still teach and students still learn. Digital tools engage students in becoming part of the lesson with video responses, discussions, and interactions with each other on safe platforms designed for remote instruction and supervised by their teacher. PBS LearningMedia, a FREE PreK-12 standards-aligned platform with thousands of trusted curriculum-targeted digital resources curated in partnership with PBS stations nationwide and national partners such as NASA, NOVA, Library of Congress, and more.
Here are some of the most popular digital tools used by educators and suggestions on integrating PBS LearningMedia:
Google Classroom - Educators can create classes, distribute assignments, send feedback, and see everything in one place. PBS LearningMedia fully integrates with Google Classroom, giving you the ability to sync class rosters, assignments, and assignment results between PBS LearningMedia and Google Classroom. Learn more!
Flipgrid – Free video-based discussion platform engaging students in video feedback on PBS LearningMedia lessons or classroom topics. Learn more!
Zoom – Free remote conferencing tools such as video, audio conferencing, chat, and webinars. This resource also includes lessons on digital citizenship, a great follow up to the Digital Citizenship resources on PBS LearningMedia. Learn more!
Seesaw – Free, Students explore a variety of powerful and intuitive tools (like draw + record, collage, video, and more!) to show what they know in the way that works best for them in a portfolio. An easy method to support authentic assessment of PBS LearningMedia resources. Learn more!
Padlet – Free, online virtual “bulletin” board, where students and teachers can collaborate, reflect, share links and pictures, in a secure location. Educators can post PBS LearningMedia resources of previous video clips or assignments to encourage students to re-explore topics. Learn more!
Remember, just as we allow students time to learn new resources, we need to be kind to ourselves. Choose a new digital tool and play with it, after all, we are models of life-long learning!