Posted by Stevan K| May 25, 2020
The COVID-19 lockdown has shaken the education system to its core and forced teachers to come up with new and engaging ways to teach students—at a distance.
If you’re struggling with your classroom management in this new environment, you aren’t alone. For many teachers, planning for online lessons is something completely new.
So, how can you use your time wisely and make the most of your online lesson planning? The more organized you are, the easier it will be to face the new challenges due to the COVID-19 lockdown.
These classroom management tips for teachers can help you make the most of your time, both in and out of the classroom.
Keep reading for some effective classroom time management ideas for distance learning.
Like all physical classrooms, it’s important to establish rules and expectations early on, so that everyone is on the same page when it comes to virtual education.
Consider how you expect your students to turn in assignments, how students will be graded for participation, the deadlines for homework assignments, and the policy for late work. How will students be held accountable for their learning and what responsibilities will they have?
A good classroom management tip for teachers is to send an email to all students that outlines the classroom rules and sets the standards for the online class. By establishing these rules at the get-go, you won’t have to repeat yourself as often throughout the course.
Online learning offers a lot more flexibility compared to regular classroom learning, so it’s easy to get overwhelmed with all the facets of teaching online.
Create a routine not just for your students, but for yourself as well. To help teachers with time management, set aside blocks of time throughout the week to accomplish certain tasks, such as marking assignments, lesson planning, and being available online for your students to communicate with you in real-time.
Just like online teaching is challenging for teachers, it’s just as challenging for students, too. It’s easy for students to mismanage their time, so setting a routine that everyone in the classroom can follow helps to keep everyone on track.
One of the most important aspects of teaching in a physical classroom is getting to know your students and building strong relationships with them. With an online classroom, personal connection can fall to the wayside if you don’t pay attention to it.
Therefore, make your communication multi-dimensional and unambiguous. Check in with students on a regular basis to see how they are doing both on a personal and academic level. The lockdown is unlike anything your students have likely experienced before and emotions are high.
Make sure your students feel like they’re part of a learning community and provide them with the outlets needed to express their concerns, feedback, and questions. The more communication you establish with your students, the more they will feel supported.
On that note, one of the best online classroom management tips for teachers is to make yourself available for private discussions with your students.
Set aside some time during the week to check in with your students one-on-one. This provides them the opportunity to talk to you about confidential matters, much like students can do during recess or lunch breaks at school. Maybe they have question about their coursework, or maybe they just want to talk to you about the stress of having their school year cut short due to the lockdown. Either way, give your students the platform to reach out to you if they need to.
You could also create a drop box or private journal option in your online classroom that allows students to submit questions privately.
Many teachers might already be familiar with online classroom time management tools like Blackboard, Dropbox, or Google Classroom; for others, it’s a whole new ball game.
Online tools can help teachers with time management in the classroom by providing a platform for assignment submissions, polls, self-grading, testing, and tracking.
If these online learning tools are new to you, use your spare time during the lockdown to familiarize yourself with the various tools, apps, software, and platforms available for e-learning. There are a lot of seminars and workshops you can take online that will help you successfully integrate online tools into your online classroom.
Remember that you aren’t the only one trying to adjust to this new classroom format online; millions of educators worldwide are struggling to find classroom management tips for teachers during the pandemic.
With the new format of teaching online and with the social distancing rules still in place, chances are that you’re going to have some downtime during the day. Use your downtime wisely to plan your lessons as far into the future as possible. There’s no such thing as being too prepared!
Scrambling for time causes stress at home and in the classroom, which benefits no one. Therefore, take this downtime to organize, reevaluate, and reassess the effectiveness of your current lesson plans and introduce any necessary changes that would improve your program.
Lessons can always be perfected, modified, and improved, and all this extra time that you now have on your hands can help you come up with better classroom management ideas.
Adjusting to the new normal of teaching online can be difficult; however, the best way for teachers to stay ahead of the game is to have already-made tools at their disposal. And that’s where TIMESAVERS for TEACHERS can help. We provide classroom management tips for teachers through our various high-quality tools such as The Teacher’s Binder, Teacher Report Card Comments Collection, Substitute Teacher Instructions Kit, and Classroom Awards.
All our resources are downloadable, so simply visit our web site to learn more about our classroom time management ideas and to find the tools you need to manage a digital classroom during the COVID-19 pandemic.