Remote Teaching versus Physical Classroom Teaching

This week has been a challenge for me as I sit in front of the computer to work on lesson plans for my students, post daily tasks, answer emails from parents and the school admin, as well as correct the tasks that my students have submitted. I am not used to sitting at a table in front of a computer for an entire day and it has been hard for me to adjust.

On Thursday I had my first remote get-together with my class. The children were so excited and were talking non-stop! The meeting was a success and will enable me to move onto the next step – meeting with my students in small groups. I have planned sessions for next week and we will see how it goes.

I do miss being in my classroom with my students in front of me. It is so much easier to work with young children without the barrier of distance. In the classroom, I do not have to rely on the parents to help me teach their children – and I do not have to rely on quirky technology or dodgy internet connections. In addition, in the classroom I am able to help those children who remain quiet and often fade into the background.

Hopefully, though, I will soon be a physical presence in front of my students and interact with them throughout the day. In the meantime, I will continue to figure out ways to connect with them and to expose them to experiences and ideas that will enhance their learning.

I want to share a video with you that encapsulates a lot of what I am experiencing at the moment with distance teaching. Obviously a lot of the content has been exaggerated for its comedic value – but buried within the humour, there are seeds of truth.

As we move into the next week of remote teaching, we have been told that the date for the re-opening of schools has been pushed back once again. As of now, our schools will hopefully open 14 May. Until then, our province will continue with the State of Emergency and the social distancing protocol.

What has been your experience of remote teaching/learning?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2020

(This post is linked to the Six Word Saturday challenge)

Day 20: Temporary Posts

After working at Qhakaza for nine years, I had to leave the school. It was no longer receiving funding and had to close down. It was a sad day when I said good-bye. My experience had been a positive and fulfilling one – and was one I would not experience at another school. I left the halls of the community school and entered the buildings of the Gauteng Education Department.

My experience at the government schools were were all temporary because South African school boards at that time were not hiring permanent staff (in this way they saved on benefits). My experience at these schools were stifling and, because the high schools were so large, I did not interact with all the teachers working at the school.  I was expected to follow many rules and fulfil expectations that had not been asked of me before. In addition, I was told what material to teach by the Head of the English Department. This did not sit well with me. I was used to planning my own lessons and doing group work with the children.

I worked in the South African government schools for a total of 18 months. After working at a post in a primary school, I married, had children, then became a stay-at-home mom.

photo (52)© Colline Kook-Chun, 2015

(This post was written for the FMF 31 day challenge hosted by Kate Motaung. Today’s prompt: temporary)

Missed a post? Click here to read all my memoirs for the series titled Blackboard Scribbles.