As districts quickly turn back to distance learning, it is important for teachers to teach the technology vocabulary without being face to face.
"We'll be going back to school using the hybrid model." was the message from many districts as early as a week or two ago. Now, as the COVID-19 numbers continue to rise, many of them are saying "Actually, we'll teach from a distance for a little while first." As much as I understand and appreciate districts (including mine) following the science and making safe decisions, I have to admit that I am bummed. I was looking forward to having at least a little while to teach those basic skills and procedures in person.
One of the skills that I always start the year with is technology skills, especially vocabulary. Direct teaching words like upload, save, restart and double click from the beginning, makes it easier for my kiddos to get into complex technology tasks quicker. I can explain technology tasks to them easier if they already know the correct words. This is important every year, but with kiddos so reliant on technology for their education this year, it is more important this school year.
Most years I teach kiddos technology vocabulary using my technology vocabulary cards. After we talk about a word, I add it to the word wall, so that they can refer back to it regularly. Since kiddos won't have that word wall to refer back to this year, I created a technology terminology presentation in Google Slides. I can add this presentation to their Google Classroom, so that they can refer back to it in the same way they would refer back to a word wall.
So here is my plan to teach technology vocabulary during distance learning: I plan to pre-teach each vocabulary word to my students using the word wall cards, held up in Google Meet (3 - 5 a day). Then students will come up with example sentences for how we might use these words. They will also draw a picture that might represent these words - using Whiteboard.fi. Finally, we will look through the Google Slide Presentation to see where that word is when they need to refer back to it. After they have been introduced to the words, we will complete a technology activity that will ask them to use those words. For example, after learning the words download and upload, they may have a Google Classroom assignment that asks them to download a PDF and/or to upload a picture they have drawn. By having students USE the words regularly, they will internalize meanings much quicker.
Both of these resources are available for sale separately in my Teachers Pay Teacher store. I also have them bundled at a discount. How will you use them to make distance learning easier this school year?
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