Not sure what to expect in this coming school year? Will your school district begin the year with in-person classroom instruction? Or will your district start the year with remote learning? Or will instruction be a combination of both? If you are grappling with these questions, you are not alone.

In the western North Carolina school district where we teach, we are preparing for several possible teaching scenarios. But regardless of how your district will provide instruction this fall, teachers need a strong academic scaffold to build upon.

Related content: What the pandemic has revealed about digital equity

In a two-part series of articles, we are going to offer some ways to create the foundation your students need for success. In this first article, let’s look at 5 ways to begin to build a strong academic scaffold for your remote learning environment.

1) Create a strong meaningful and emotional connection with your students. Having a connection with students is the foundation of any classroom community and it’s where teachers naturally begin their year; however, in a remote teaching environment powered by digital resources, this step must be strategic. In an in-person scenario, this time would have been accomplished by getting to know your games, team building activities, and simply spending time together the first week of school. How do you transfer this imperative time when you are not face-to-face, without just turning those important activities to digital form?

About the Author:

Jennifer Tatum and Emily Fagan teach and work together in North Carolina public schools. They continue their growth with the resource Discovery Education. You can find them attending Discovery Education’s Summer Institutes, presenting at local and state conferences, and daily in their classroom changing how they use digital media.

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