By. Meredith Biesinger
Nothing about the 2019-2020 school year has been typical. As most K-12 schools, and even higher education switched over to a virtual learning model in March, online education has been the hot topic during the last quarter of this school year. As preparations are being made for the upcoming 2020-2021 school year, there are varied proposals of what the next school year will look like….spoiler alert, they all include virtual learning.
This is actually good news for companies and vendors looking to strengthen relationships with current clients, and potential clients. Summer is typically a time of professional development for educators, including conferences, training’s, and continuing education courses. These offerings are still viable, maybe even more so than usual, when offered in a skills focused, online session. The positives of such sessions include: Overhead costs are eliminated by utilizing technology, instead of a brick and mortar building, multiple sessions can be offered at different times to accommodate various schedules, while offering much needed flexibility, and feedback will be instantaneous.
Varied virtual sessions that combine training and engagement with the offered product, are most effective and appreciated. Online professional development has been around for years. We’ve all participated in conference calls and online training’s, some of which are relevant and useful, while others, play in the background as we continue to grade papers, or create lesson plans. The key word to successful professional development is, relevant.
Adding new content, or creating skills focused online sessions for summer professional development should be focused on content that is relevant to current educational standards, as well as what is being asked of educators within their districts, schools, and classrooms. Common topics include: Behavior and classroom management, STEM and next generation science standards, social emotional learning, literacy, early language learners, bully compliance, teaching mindfulness….and for summer 2020? How to teach effectively in a K-12 virtual learning classroom.
The physical classroom for students and teachers has currently changed, yet, the end goal is the same: to learn. Much like teachers need to stay relevant and engaged with their students to ensure their success, likewise, companies marketing to educators need to do the same. What an exciting time for online professional development, the possibilities are endless!
Contact your team to learn how they can help you get in front of educators during this important time of change and learning.