Learning looks different these days, which means adjusting to some changes. Educators are handling this “new normal” with creativity, resourcefulness, and a fair amount of extra patience. Some schools plan on in-school instruction with physical distancing. Others are incorporating either fully remote or hybrid learning approaches. No matter which “trail” you’re on this year, know that The Walking Classroom is here to support you.
“Now more than ever with our COVID restrictions and change of instruction, The Walking Classroom will provide teachers with the perfect tool to implement with a variety of options too.
– Susan Isner, West Virginia
In-School Instruction with Physical Distancing
With modified seating and the use of physical barriers, tape, signage, or verbal cues (airplane arms, anyone?) to ensure proper distancing, in-school instruction will definitely present some challenges. The need for proper spacing may limit class sizes and necessitate staggered scheduling. However, it may encourage more outdoor learning — especially outdoor learning which engages students individually. This is a situation for which The Walking Classroom is perfectly suited.
Existing adopters have adapted to the changes. Some have even shared possible applications of The Walking Classroom for in-school instruction with physical distancing. Suggestions include using the program in lieu of contact activities and to keep movement in the day.
I am so excited to have The Walking Classroom especially as we talk about cutting recess time next year due to social distancing. I can still get my kids out for exercise, but in a fun way — where I know they will keep the distance.
– Kathleen Butler, California
With COVID-19 as an issue, the coming school year I will use The Walking Classroom more to replace contact activities in my curriculum.
– Holly Peters, Texas
I am excited to use TWC this coming year with all the distance restrictions and such. My district is very much encouraging the use of outdoor spaces and The Walking Classroom will be perfect for this!
– Katie Auerbach Facundo, California
Some Tips on Sharing
Using devices in school? If you are sharing devices, it will be especially important to integrate the following practices into your (and your students’) routine.
- Label or number devices and assign them to students by number.
- Ensure that each student has his/her own earbuds. Keeping these in individually labeled Ziploc bags would be helpful.
- Clean and disinfect devices after each use. Lysol, Clorox, or other disinfecting wipes are fine. It may be helpful to individually wrap the devices in plastic wrap (still allowing for manipulation of the buttons) for easier cleaning and disinfecting.
- Additionally, limit device use to one group for an extended period, rather than swapping between groups over the course of a week. Afterward, clean and disinfect the devices before giving to the next group.
Know That We Are Here for You!
With all the changes, these are challenging times. As former classroom educators ourselves, we know that makes your job more difficult. Keep us aware of any challenges that you encounter, and we will do what we can to keep you and your students on Happy Trails!
And, for more ideas on how The Walking Classroom can support you amid all the changes, check out our recorded webinar, Using the Walking Classroom in Hybrid and Remote Learning Environments.