Remote Learning: managing workloads and deadlines for pupils

2020-03-31

With remote teaching now playing a key role in delivering education across the UK, teachers need to ensure that their pupils remain engaged as much as possible.


To do this, teaching staff should try to set adequate levels of work and carefully manage expectations around submission and deadlines.


They’ll also need to think about which tools they use to deliver their remote teaching, how they upload resources and what time frames they give pupils to complete tasks.


What topics and work to cover

Where possible, tasks should be challenging and relate to topics that pupils have been covering in class, to minimise disruption to their learning.


Any activities that are set remotely can then be used to enhance their current understanding or to introduce new concepts that build on existing ideas.


Practical considerations for tasks

According to SWGfL, a charity that works to keep children safe online, teachers need to give careful consideration to the tasks they set for several reasons.


While education websites and similar resources are designed with safety in mind, others available via third parties may not be, meaning youngsters could access content that is not suitable for them.


Teachers are encouraged to thoroughly check any resources before use and to also check that pupils will not incur any costs for completing the tasks such as mobile data access charges.


Deadlines and timing

While pupils need to be given sufficient time to complete tasks assigned to them, there is also a need to ensure that they have enough work to be getting on with.


Teachers should look to ensure that a degree of development is possible with each task so that every pupil can benefit.


This is slightly easier if classes are taught on ability, although if this is not the case, teachers should aim to ensure that the needs of pupils at both ends of the learning spectrum are met.


Guidance for pupils

It’s also important for teachers to guide pupils on how they can best learn while at home – from taking a break from staring at a screen to ensuring they have adequate space to work in.


Where possible, pupils should also be encouraged to find a place to work where any distractions can be kept to a minimum.


Teachers may also wish to set aside a time when pupils can chat with them one-on-one via video call, giving them a safe space in which to ask questions or get any additional help if they require it.


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