Transitioning to a remote learning environment on short notice is not easy. It takes time for teachers and students to adjust to these new ways of learning, and continuous communication is key to optimising these arrangements. We have pulled together a number of strategies to help you support your students in this time of flux, using your Loop account.
Ensure all your students are on the same communication platform
In your Loop account (sign-up here if you don't have one), create a group for each of your remote learning classes. You can invite each student to your class. Students already on Loop will be automatically added to your class, while other students will receive an email asking them to join.
Post an announcement to all students in the group
Once students have joined your group, post an announcement how you will use Loop to support their learning. Text might be as follows:
"Welcome to Loop! I will be using Loop to stay in touch with you. That means understanding how your learning is going and how I can support you. Loop is available on the web and through the App Store"
Once you have posted an announcement on Loop, you will be able to see which students have read the announcement. This provides an early indication of those students that will be most engaged and those that might require some support with remote learning.
Ask two questions to calibrate your students' preparedness for remote learning
Establishing an early baseline is critical to an effective transition to remote learning. As an educator, you want to be able to understand from Day 1 how prepared your students are for the transition. Are they aware that it might present some challenges, and have they begun reflecting on how they might need to adapt their learning styles? Two questions below are pre-loaded into Loop's platform:
1. How have you gone setting up a learning environment at home?
2. What are the largest challenges you see to remote learning?
Once you have received these response, you can post an announcement back to the group that summarises the key themes and provides any further advice. You might also message a number of students individually based on their specific responses.
Use Loop as an ongoing tool to understand student progress and well-being
Now that you and your students are up and running with Loop, you can now easily Loop to stay in contact with your students. We would suggest asking your students 2-3 questions per week. We have detailed below some of the areas your questions might relate to:
- What are you struggling to understand?
- What topics would you like me to cover again?
Remote learning practices:
- How can I better support your learning?
- Where do you need the most support right now?
- How comfortable are you with accessing resources for this unit online?
- What challenges are you facing in working from home?
Use Loop's messaging function to stay in close contact with your students without exchanging phone numbers
Loop includes messaging functionality, so that that teachers and students can stay in close contact. This functionality can be used on our Loop's web app and mobile app, meaning that messaging on a phone can occur without the exchange of phone numbers.
Unlike surveys, you can reply to any response you receive on Loop.
Post future announcements to keep your students up-to-date
At any time on Loop you can post an announcement to your students. You will be able to see who has read the announcement.
If your students have the Loop app on their phone they will receive the announcement instantly.
Why Loop is so effective to support remote learning and transitions in teaching and learning practices
Loop is a safe and flexible tool that was built to aid teacher understanding, provide students with a voice to shape their learning environment, and to enable teachers to make fast and effective changes to better support their students.
- Loop is available on any device, including phones: Loop was built for maximum engagement so can be used on any platform. For those students have a mobile phone, Loop is an incredibly effective way to increase student communication and teacher visibility.
- Loop was built for flexibility and instant deployment: Whatever the learning environment, Loop can be tailored according. Teachers can set-up as many groups as they like, and no IT department support is required.
- Loop is a safe space: In times of uncertainty, both teachers and students need to feel safe. Loop includes world-leading anonymity controls, and all data is private and secure.
- Loop includes model questions to offer teachers maximum support: We know now is a stressful time. To help teachers using Loop we have pre-loaded a number of questions in Loop related to remote learning. These can be used instantly on Loop.