Tips for Teachers Returning to School after Lockdown

10 June 2020

Tips for Teachers Returning to School after Lockdown –

With Grade 12 and Grade 7 learners returning to school on 8 June 2020 and additional grades returning on a phased basis, educators have to adjust to a new reality in the workplace and in the classroom.

The following 6 tips aim to help teachers with this transition:

  1. Schools have not been ‘closed’…

    Look at it this way – although you, and your learners, have been at home, learning and teaching continued. As a teacher you prepared lessons, albeit in a different way, you sent work home and/or you taught online. Learners worked ahead, became acquainted with independent learning and did homework.
    Education was on-going, and it still is, though everyone has had to adapt as the reality in our country – and the rest of the world – changed.

  2. Tell them how you feel

    Be honest – but factual – with your learners. Share with them how you feel. Don’t dwell on personal detail but let them understand that this is a time of uncertainty for all of us. This will lead to shared respect and an acknowledgement of how your and their wellbeing is of utmost importance.

  3. Let them talk

    Set time aside for learners to share their feelings when school opens again.
    Of course time is at a premium due to the teaching hours that have been lost whilst schools were closed but building a new relationship with the learners in your class will motivate them as well as get rid of the initial excitement of seeing friends and classmates again after so many weeks at home.

  4. A time of new beginnings

    Going back to school means that everyone has to face ‘a new normal’. All around us things have changed.
    Adjusting to the ‘new normal’ like social distancing, smaller classes and phased schooling will take time. Do not attempt to rush the process. Allow time for yourself and your learners to get used to new routines and a new way of doing things, whatever it may entail.
    Don’t neglect to acknowledge, yet again to yourself and to your learners, that we have lived – and are living – through a historic time where everyone is learning, and adjusting, as we go along.

  5. Levels of learning during lockdown

    Some learners would have tried their utmost to do as much school work as possible, others might have treated lockdown as an extended holiday. As a result there will be huge differences in knowledge attained by the individual learners in your class. Keep this in mind when planning lessons when it comes to revision and/or covering a new section of the curriculum.

  6. Keep an eye out for learners who are not coping

    Some learners might struggle to cope academically or emotionally. These learners might need additional support. Keep an eye on learners who may be at-risk in your class and refer them to the school counsellor, contact their parents or arrange for extra support that would benefit them and help to remedy the situation.

How to create a happy classroom
How to create a happy classroom - There is a classroom poster that states - If you’re a teacher you are also a: life coach, motivator, discovery guide, negotiator, cheerleader, rule enforcer, role model, organiser, counsellor, handwriting expert, mediator, truth detector, entertainer and trainer. While you might fulfil most of these roles at any given time, all of the above will be much more effortless if you manage to create   &nbs [...]
read full article
The power of self-efficacy
🔶 The power of self-efficacy - Katy Mellow, a Mathematics teacher at St. Stithians Boys’ College in South Africa, won the 2020 IBSC (International Boys School Coalition) Action Research Award for completing a highly innovative action research project. The title of her project is Taking Charge: Developing Self-Efficacy in Grade 8 Boys Through a Self-Determined and Project-Based Learning Program.As explained on the IBSC website this action research p [...]
read full article
Tools for teachers to ensure that learners are coping
🛠Tools for teachers to ensure that learners are coping - Facing a class with teenagers with different backgrounds, personalities, problems and stress levels is never easy at the best of times. Determining whether they are coping overall is not an easy task either.The following tools and tips are pointers to make it somewhat easier for you as a teacher to endeavour to ensure your learners are coping. 🔴 Show compassion and understanding Most teac [...]
read full article