13 of Our Most Helpful Pandemic Posts


Blended teaching? Hybrid teaching? Remote teaching? Whatever we call it, we don’t know for sure when teaching “pandemic-style” will end. Looking back over the last year, here are 13 insightful MiddleWeb articles about surviving the “blend” and hanging on to strategies that turned out to be long overdue.

Students Have Hybrid Tips for Teachers

Middle schoolers share what they think teachers need to know about hybrid learning, with tips for improving learning in the mix of in-person and online classes. It’s the experiences at home – being heard, having time to use tech properly – that garner the most criticism. Direct from Kasey Short’s middle school classroom.

Let’s Not Forget the Hard-won Covid Lessons

Watching her teenager struggle through a day of virtual learning, teacher Dina Strasser is trying to not lose what we’ve learned about supporting kids and parents through the pandemic challenges, retaining the patience and concern so needed to buoy our school communities.

How We Redefined What School Means

Most students at Laurie Lichtenstein’s middle school were F2F all last year, but masked and isolated in small classroom pods as teachers moved about. It was hard, but as time passed teachers found ways to reduce isolation, build community, and let kids have lots of time to play.

6 Issues Students Face in Remote Learning

Issues students wrestle with in the traditional classroom may be magnified during online learning. To address them, we need to adapt our regular classroom strategies to help students succeed. Teaching expert Barbara Blackburn looks at six common issues.

Less Is More: Teaching Kids What Matters Most

Principal and NBCT Rita Platt shares advice for a paradigm shift away from obsessive coverage of content and toward deep and differentiated learning for students who have lived through the months of pandemic schooling. Three questions help us understand what’s essential.

Digital Teaching Gains: What Will We Keep?

Idaho teacher educator Curtis Chandler sees several pandemic positives: Improved teacher attitudes towards digital tools; educators who are more skillful using and troubleshooting tech; and a significant shift toward teaching methods that better engage and involve students.

Prepping for My Next Google Classroom

Want to keep content from last year’s digital classes while at the same time close down your prior students’ access? Follow along as NBCT Kathleen Palmieri shows how she’s organizing her files and folders to prep a fresh Google Classroom space as the new school year begins.

3 Pandemic Practices I’ll Be Taking Forward

In this pandemic year Katie Durkin adopted 3 new practices she’ll be carrying forward: going paperless; slowing down the curriculum to provide more feedback to students; and using the Flipped Classroom model.

Helping Faculty and Staff Find Work-Life Balance

This year’s whirlwind of factors impacting schools has left educators absolutely exhausted. Consultants Ron Williamson and Barbara R. Blackburn share ways leaders can support their staff (and themselves) to achieve work-life balance in anticipation of the next school year.

Review: Pursuing Technology with Intention This Year

Suzanne Kelly and Elizabeth Dobler help us understand that technology, when used with intention, can help teachers augment instruction without letting it dictate what we do.They offer many tools and ideas to guide decision making as we integrate tech into our lesson plans.

“Educational technology has never been so important or overwhelming as it has been the last few years. As we try to pull it all together after a tumultuous 12 months, we could use some helpful advice from the field,” says reviewer and classroom teacher Kathie Palmieri.

Listening to the Voices of My 6, 7 and 8th Graders

For his final post at the end of the most challenging school year ever, Jeremy Hyler went to his students in grades 6, 7 and 8 and asked them: “Is there something you want to share with the education world?” Here’s what they had to say – and what Jeremy thought about it.

How Covid Is Improving My Teaching Practice

With her students facing so many pandemic challenges, Michelle Russell decided to say ‘yes’ to as many requests as possible, whether it was late papers, school supplies, or a quick review minutes before a test. Here’s what she’s discovered about the value of answering YES.

Carrying Forward Our Lessons About Teaching

Each educator braving the gauntlet of Covid-era teaching has been stressed and stretched to wits’ end. It’s time to collect the payoff from this strenuous work. Curtis Chandler relates 5 questions teachers asked themselves during the crisis. “If we begin the new school year with solid answers, we’ll be rewarded.”