As back to school inches closer, Elevate teachers are getting prepped and ready to go for the 2022-2023 school year — and so are we! Our teams are hard at work creating more formative assessments for our classes, sharpening up our self-service portal, and streamlining our classroom communication processes. To take some of the back-to-school stress off everyone’s plate, our Academics team has compiled a list of the best tips for teaching online in 2022.
So whether you’re kicking off your first year in a teach-from-home classroom, you’re an online veteran, or you’re Elevate-curious, here are seven of our best steps to success for online teaching!
Collaborate with Induction Coaches and Academic Coaches
A big factor in Elevate teachers’ success in online teaching is the team of support they’ve got behind them. In addition to amazing in-room Classroom Coaches, teachers also have the support of Induction Coaches and Academic Coaches, who help them set goals for themselves and their students, as well as develop plans for how to make those goals a reality.
Many of our Induction Coaches — who assist Elevate teachers with onboarding and getting acclimated to fully synchronous online teaching — and Academic Coaches — who provide support with content, pacing, and coaching — joined Elevate as teachers and grew into advisory positions after gaining experience teaching online. They’re equipped with firsthand knowledge and experience with Elevate systems to really set teachers up for success as the new year begins and troubleshoot along the way.
Connect with fellow Elevate Teachers in the Teachers’ Lounge
Elevate Teachers get access to an extensive community to interact and build relationships with other teachers, ask questions, share successes, and draw on the hive mind of fellow educators! This is an especially great tool for folks who are new to online teaching, but it’s valuable to all teachers to share ideas and connect with other Induction Team members.
The Induction Team is here specifically to help teachers get up and running in the early stages of allocation, as well as to provide lasting support throughout the school year.
Set up an organized, well-lit teaching environment
Several of our teachers get creative with their home classrooms and often use bright colors, maps, learning aides, and other fun and eye-catching decorations in their spaces.
Not only will fun decorations, an organized space, and strong lighting help establish a solid boundary between home space and working space, it’ll also help students see and hear teachers and facilitate better engagement during classes.
Get acclimated with the program calendar, unit resources, and lesson plans
Back to school is a perfect time to look ahead at everything to come for a program and to start measuring out which resources will be valuable and when. Teachers prepare for a day’s classes prior to logging on to teach, but the beginning of the new year provides another great opportunity to take a big-picture glance at what the school year will look like, what key concepts are involved, and what instructional methods may be beneficial.
Review the awesome professional learning tools in Schoox and ELLA
The Elevate Live Learning Academy and Schoox learning management systems host a range of professional development tools that are always available to Elevate teachers. Some of our best practices even come from other Elevate teachers – and who better to hear from on the ins and outs of Elevate programs!
“At Elevate, we love to learn as much as we love to teach,” says Director of Learning and Development Shelley Johnson, “and our teachers are constantly coming up with new best practices to deliver quality instruction in the Elevate platform. We offer professional learning several times a year for our teachers to make sure they learn and grow right along with our students.”
Live out the mission of providing high quality instruction to students every day, everywhere
Equity is the pinnacle of the Elevate mission, and our teachers are shining examples of that as they continue breaking zip code barriers and provide high-quality teaching, online every day. And at Elevate, equitable education is more than just quality instruction: it also means forming real connections and relationships with their students.
“Our teachers live out the Elevate mission every day by bringing their best self to the screen,” says Assistant Vice President of Instruction Carolyn Lanctot. “They create an inviting, open, and safe space for students to ask questions, learn content, develop relationships, and grow as learners. Our teachers can make that connection even if they are hundreds of miles away because they believe in their students and want the best for them inside and outside of the classroom.”
Make the most of time off
We often talk about teaching from home, but the reality is that when instructors teach online with Elevate, they can teach from anywhere. With the ability to bring work along on any trips or travel — and with the assistance and support available in lesson planning, preparation, and grading — it’s easy to reserve time in the day for hobbies, sightseeing, or personal time!
At Elevate, taking advantage of downtime and really owning work-life balance or integration is crucial. Stress and burnout can impact the efficacy of work, but they also disrupt natural equilibrium. Using time off to take care of stress and burnout are key contributors to personal mental health and development, too.
We are always looking to bring passionate, energetic new teachers into our ranks here at Elevate! To join a strong community of flexible, passionate, high-quality educators, learn more about our online teaching positions and apply now!