In the new normal of the Coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak, many schools and universities have closed the traditional classroom to bring instruction on-line through remote teaching/learning. Educators and institutions are sharing resources and best practices for teaching on-line. I list some below. In addition, I am available to visit your class remotely through customized videos and live video streaming class visits to lecture and to lead class discussion. (See details at the end of this blog post)
Some Resources (and feel free to share your own in the comments below)
- Resources and Suggestions for Teaching Remotely from UPenn’s Center for Teaching & Learning
- Keep Teaching: Resources for Teaching Remotely from Georgia State’s Center for Excellence in Teaching & Learning
- Amy Pistone’s Resources fo Teaching Remotely
- Princeton University has a series of articles on a variety of topics including Exams, Communication, and Course Administration
- Skillcrush offers 13 tips for anyone working from home. From what to wear to how to schedule your day, these tips can help you transition to working remotely.
Some of my own thoughts, suggestions, and offers
For over 10 years I have been an on-line educator in multiple formates. Through short YouTube videos, blog posts, podcasts, and live webinars, I developed ways to communicate clearly and visually. While it is acceptable to record a lecture with a talking head, when we move from a live presentation to the a much smaller screen, we lose critical aspects in the communication process. It is not our job to entertain students, but we all have developed techniques in the classroom to keep students engaged and able get the most out time in the classroom. As instructors move to on-line instruction and teach remotely, new techniques need to be employed.
In the fall I was invited to present a video plenary to open a climate change conference in Edinburgh. The organizers explained many of the presentations following mine would be heavy and heady. They wanted to have me provide a framework for addressing climate change. I opted to use a friendly, playful, and personal tone while addressing an incredibly serious issue. The insertion of music, graphics, sound effects, subtitles, and other titles added the elements that are lost when going from live presentation to recorded presentation. In many ways this is still a traditional presentation, but enhanced to provide more texture: Coming Out Gay and Ready to Take on Climate Change.
Video works best though as a visual medium, so in addition to the talking head approach, I use images over a recorded message to create short videos. In looking at climate fiction with writer, Clare Vaye Watkins, the visuals complement the conversation: Bubble&Squeak, A conversation with author Clare Vaye Watkins.
An activity you can have students do is to read and article, watch a film, or listen to a podcast, than create a one-minute video that captures the key points. I do this every month with my Citizens Climate Radio show. I use an excellent on-line tool called called Headliner. I upload one minute of audio then use use my own images along with images and video I pull from Headliner’s library. In this one-minute video, you learn about the groundbreaking work of two scientists at Tuskegee University I covered in a 30 minute podcast.
I have a large catalog of podcast episodes that cover climate change issues. I also co-host the Bible Bash Podcast with Liam Hooper. Some professors and teachers assign a podcast episode to students. Once they hear it, follow up with class discussion or an assignment.
How I can help you in your own remote teaching
Here is a sample of the sort of interactive Zoom sessions I lead. This is a video from a 30 minute break-out session with 500 participants. So many people, but we covered a lot of ground.
After visiting classrooms for the past ten years, creating content for the web, and leading webinars through Zoom, I am able to produce original videos and podcasts for your classroom instruction. I can also visit your classroom remotely and facilitate discussion with students through Zoom. I can make video and audio quickly, and can tailor them to your classroom. Like in my live classroom visits, I offer the following presentations and topics.
- Gender and Women Studies
- The dangers of conversion therapy
- The performance of gender in gay male spaces
- Gender variance in the Bible
- Environmental Science and Climate Change
- effectively communicating climate change: moving beyond climate impacts to communicating the impacts of climate solutions
- pets and climate change (an engaging interactive presentation for elementary, middle, and high school students. College students like it too.
- Pursuing our passions in a time of climate change
- System change vs. individual change, and much more)
- Theater and Playwriting
- How to create, produce, and promote a one-person play
- Character development
- Merging Theatre Arts and Activism
- Radio drama
- Bible and Religious Studies
- Gender non-conforming Bible characters
- Exploring a text through theatre practice and movement
- Ethics, Values, and the Role of Faith Communities in a time of Climate Change
- What does the Bible say about Climate Change?
- Quaker faith, practice, and role in society
- Psychology and Social Work
- Gender, Sexuality, and the Conversion Therapy Movement
- Best practices for working with survivors of conversion therapy
- Peace Studies and Activism
- Slow Dancing with the Enemy: How to Engage Your Opponent.
- Advocate, Rebel, Helper, Organizer: Exploring the Various Roles Change Makers Play
- Using Art in Activism
I am prepared to create five, ten, fifteen, and twenty minute videos that cover any of the topics above. I also can visit your virtual classroom for a live presentation including discussion time. I can off the video and live sessions at a substantially lower price than if you were to bring me to your campus to do a live presentation. If you want to use a video or podcast I already created, it is available free for you use without cost and permission. You may also use Transfigurations, which is available to stream in the US, UK, Germany, and Japan.
When I taught at the Watkinson School in Hartford, CT, I served as the Infusion Teacher for the entire Ninth Grade. My job was to work with teachers to help them infused their classrooms with the best teaching practices that fit with the subject, their teaching styles and strengths, and the needs of the students. If you would like to set up a time for a consultation about what you want to do in your classroom, the first fifteen minutes is free.
Email me at p2saki @ gmail.com