Relationship and Resilience in 2021-2021 School Year


Five Takeaways From Remote Learning During the COVID-19 Pandemic

January 1, 2021. The world ushered in a new year and said goodbye to one of the most challenging years in recent history. Through these challenges, however, professionals in every field learned to adapt. Healthcare, retail, hospitality and education overhauled decades-old practices to survive and serve their communities in the pandemic era. Teachers left their classrooms in March of 2020 and were not sure when they would return. Teachers did not know how they would deliver instruction to their students, synchronous or asynchronous? They had to learn how to teach in a different format in a matter of days. Not only did they have to support their students academically, but also mentally and emotionally. They were pushed to reflect on their own teaching philosophy and how teaching during a pandemic impacts that.

Even in the midst of this toggle between online and in-person teaching, new teachers are entering the field of education. They are enrolling in teacher-preparation programs and completing degrees in education. Many teachers are completing online teacher-preparation programs like the TEACH-NOW Teacher Preparation Certificate Program in order to become equipped, enabled, and empowered to go into any learning environment anywhere in the world and diagnose where each learner is coming from. Teachers aim to design and implement learning experiences to ensure that every student learns, grows, and develops. As teachers graduate and prepare to enter the classroom, many are wondering how to apply newly learned best practices in pedagogy in the hybrid learning environment. After teachers’ most challenging year yet, there are five overarching takeaways to share with new teachers in a post-pandemic world.


Relationships and connections are critical.

Relationships with students, parents, colleagues, and administrators are crucial for successful teaching and learning. Building a rapport with those around you supports not only them, but you. Moreover, teachers often neglect taking care of themselves as they focus solely on supporting students. Prioritize your health and wellbeing on your journey to become a successful teacher.


Not all students learn the same.

Remote learning demonstrated that some students thrive in the virtual setting. Many students preferred formative thumbs up or down checks, while others opted to respond in the chat space. Some excelled in online platforms, while others needed extra support. Online teaching can be visual, auditory, and kinesthetic! Teachers thought outside the box, often relying on Personal Learning Network.


Students look to their teachers more than many realized.

Teaching is a field of work in which being absent has a direct and immediate effect on others. Students’ learning experiences and achievement are deeply impacted when teachers call out sick, take a personal day, or attend professional development. Teachers spend hours a day with students and play a large part in their overall day. When teachers no longer saw students in person as a result of remote learning due to COVID-19, there was a change in the sense of community and belonging of the physical classroom. Remember: Students look to you and may depend on you to be a reassuring presence in their life.


Social-emotional learning (SEL) is essential.

The COVID-19 pandemic has been an unsure and unsettling time for students. In response, teachers made intentional effort to prioritize and promote students’ social and emotional learning (SEL): Teachers went the extra mile to incorporate activities that allowed students to share a bit more about themselves, offered themed days, more brain breaks and changed the tone to be more student-centered.


Teachers are more resilient than they get credit for.

It might have taken a pandemic for the world to realize that a teacher’s work day is not 8:00AM to 3:00PM. By nature, those in education are passionate and dedicated. Their days start early, end late, and carry over into the weekends. Teachers gravitate towards this field because they believe in the role of an educator to positively change the lives of students in unique ways. Given their deep investment in their work, teachers are models of resilience and perseverance. This has been highlighted now more than ever. 

As a new teacher, remember that the connections you make are valued. The time that you put into planning your lessons to meet the varied needs of learners is appreciated. You have the unique opportunity to play an important role in a student’s childhood. You will wear many hats on and off stage, but there is no better role in the world!

Courtney Stoll, M.Ed. 

Librarian, Moreland University

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