By Danielle Miller
By Danielle Miller
Back to school season is upon us, and with many teachers being back in the classroom for the first time in so long, educators may feel overwhelmed. However, this new school year brings opportunities to provide students with an education that supports each individual’s needs. At SchoolSims, we want our teachers to be confident in their decision-making as face-to-face instruction returns and teachers begin dealing with the learning loss that many students have taken on these last 2 years.
The learning loss students are experiencing due to the pandemic is a real concern as academic disparities have grown significantly. “In a recent interview on 60 Minutes about the impact of COVID-19 on students, Dr. Grant Rivera, superintendent of Marietta City Schools in Georgia, ended with a sobering final commentary: “We will have children who will carry trauma and learning loss, I believe, for their entire educational trajectory. And I think that’s what’s so important. How are we—amidst the exhaustion that our educators feel—going to proactively respond to that?” (Dr. Bonnie Cochran).
So, how do we respond to that? Research suggests that with more variations in student skill levels this academic year, a more individualized approach to teaching is the quickest way to get students back on track. Additionally, with video-based instruction becoming more popular among schools, teachers’ skills need to be built upon and prioritized with the new learning approaches at hand. Teacher training is and should be a top priority.
Schools need capable, visionary teachers to create multiple paths to academic achievement. That IS as hard as it sounds and requires targeted professional development that includes opportunities to practice different strategies and approaches. One way to provide that practice is by including the use of the SchoolSims Simulation Library in your teacher development program. SchoolSims provides an opportunity for teachers to gain virtual experience dealing with situations before encountering those same issues in real life. By allowing teachers to withstand trying situations, make decisions, and face the consequences of those decisions – all within the same session, they will be on the right path to start the learning recovery process this school year.
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Dr. Bonnie Cochran. “5 Actions to Achieve Learning Recovery and Lasting Success.” Hmhco.com, 22 Apr. 2021, www.hmhco.com/blog/5-actions-to-achieve-learning-recovery-and-lasting-success. Accessed 26 July 2021.