Culture

4 Tips for Building Community in the Online Classroom

Building community among students and teachers is more important now than ever, but it’s also probably never been more difficult as all learning moves online. Teachers can still build strong communities of learners and strong rapport with students, however, even without seeing them in person. Here are four tips for building community in the online classroom.  1. Frequent communication is a must to begin building classroom community. Sending a welcome email at the beginning of…

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How to Help Teens and Young Adults Feeling Lost Amid Pandemic

For many young people, sheltering at home means missing milestones and public recognition of their achievements. This is especially true for seniors graduating from high school and college, and many are feeling lost. Kendall Smith, a high school senior who lives in Tallahassee, Florida, says her school has many traditions leading up to graduation. One of the most eagerly anticipated events is “Grad Bash,” a rite of passage when all graduating seniors head off to…

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As a Few US Schools Reopen, Safety Must Come First

May 7 is the date that Montana Gov. Steve Bullock declared it was safe for schools to reopen in his state. But according to the state’s Office of Public Instruction, just a few school districts in small towns have taken the governor up on the offer. That gap — between a state executive proclaiming schools safe to open and the reality of tiny groups of students gathering in just a few schools — shows the…

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Summer Camps in the Time of COVID-19

In a typical summer, more than 14 million campers and staff attend overnight and day camps in the United States. But summer 2020 will be far from typical. To prepare for that, the nation’s largest summer camp associations, the American Camp Association and the YMCA of the USA, have released a field guide for how summer camps can operate more safely during the coronavirus pandemic. The 82-page guide, prepared by a private consulting firm, offers…

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What Will Happen on College Campuses in the Fall?

What will happen on college campuses in the fall? It’s a big question for families, students and the schools themselves. A lot of what happens depends on factors outside the control of individual schools: will there be more testing? Contact tracing? Enough physical space for distancing? Will the coronavirus have a second wave? Will any given state allow campuses to reopen? For all of these questions, it’s really too early to know the answers. But…

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Taking Care of Your Mental Health During Social Isolation

Social isolation is a common and valid concern as we head into an indefinite length of time with limited access to our normal routine and in-person interaction with other people. Some may take social distancing in stride, but for most, it’s causing a high degree of anxiety and anticipated loneliness. To help you relieve some of this apprehension, here are some ways to prepare and manage in order to reduce the negative emotional impact of…

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Tips for Homeschooling in a Pandemic

Without warning or time to prepare, millions of parents are now homeschooling their children for the first time thanks to the novel coronavirus. While the COVID-19 situation is unprecedented, there’s nothing inherently new about school at home. Thousands of families do it every day, but for those parents who find themselves in the difficult position of suddenly having to transition from their kids going to school each day to not being able to leave the…

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How to Teach Financial Literacy to Young Adults

Young people today face a staggering number of elaborate financial decisions, but most of them are not yet ready to make well-informed choices about money as they proceed into adulthood. According to a 2014 study, 3 out of 4 young adults can’t answer simple financial questions. While helping students develop traditional academic knowledge is useful for every child’s future, teaching students about financial literacy can be the difference between a life well lived and a…

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Mindfulness in Schools: How Helpful Is It Really?

When kids at Warner Arts Magnet Elementary School act up, they aren’t sent straight to the principal’s office. Instead, many students at the high-poverty school in Nashville go to the mindfulness room. The serene space is awash in sunlight and brimming with plants. There are yoga mats, toys, a lounging nook and soothing music drifting out of a desk speaker. In this room, teacher Riki Rattner, who is also trained as a yoga instructor, helps…

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Teaching Climate Change to Students of All Ages

Climate change, also known as global warming, has received much attention. It is also a source of much controversy. Yet while debate continues about how to best understand and manage our changing climate, scientists agree that it does have an impact. In fact, one of the essential principles of teaching climate change to students is the message that it has consequences for the earth and human lives. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration…

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