Teaching Tips from the Pandemic

As the pandemic continues, its lasting impact on our pedagogy is evident in how our shift included unexpected silver linings. Our first Teaching Center luncheon explored what colleagues learned about their pedagogy and how they decided to stick with those techniques/activities that may have started as temporary. Here are a few highlights from the luncheon:

Group Office Hours

Choose a time when students can stop by in groups on Zoom and ask questions. This gives them an opportunity to hear and learn from each other’s questions and get important information and insight from the professor.

Blackboard Announcements

This feature gives students and professors a space where information can be gathered and shared. With so much going on, everyone knows there is one place where they can find what they need. Students also receive an email when announcements are posted for the extra communication option.

Learning Triads

Building community is more challenging as we are mindful of physical distancing and its impact on our health and safety. Helping students create triads or assigning triads helps students create community that can be used for peer review or peer check-ins. Whether participating online or in-person, students create connections with another peer they can contact about the course.

Inclusion Resources

This pandemic has been not only about our public health but also about our society’s systemic ailments. Creating resource packets with intention can help you highlight resources and knowledge that contributors of undervalued groups – e.g., Asian American and Pacific Islander, Black/African-American, women – add to the access students have to various perspectives and expertise in the course.

Flexibility

March 2020 revealed the importance of flexibility, and the lessons learned show that flexibility is a requirement in this enduring pandemic. When availabilities shift and guidelines change, it impacts our pedagogy.

These shifts proved to be integral beyond the earliest parts of the pandemic. While we are still learning and teaching in this pandemic, we are learning more about ourselves, our pedagogy, and our students’ engagement. As we adjust with new and different techniques, may we have moments, as our colleagues at this luncheon shared, where we can find ways to create a new normal in an ever-changing academic experience. Many thanks to our colleagues who shared their experiences and techniques!

If you’re interested in taking this opportunity to publish about your pandemic experience with teaching, check out this post from The Scholarly Teacher.

Have a pedagogical shift that you would like to share? Email it to Heather Finch – heather.finch@belmont.edu . We might feature it in a future blog post.

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