Remote learning: teacher Stacy Harroun kept students engaged with math
A screenshot of Harroun and daughter, Ella.
“She had to show off her unicorn hand sanitizer during one of my morning videos. She is in my lap about 90% of the time.”
Sherrard Intermediate 6th grade teacher Stacy Harroun is one of a legion of teachers that had to adapt quickly to keep students engaged during remote learning.
“I think math is such a tricky subject for remote learning because students learn math in so many different ways, and one-on-one connection is so important.”
She said the way she taught math during the school’s final quarter via remote learning was varied. She introduced new lessons via Vidyard.
“I try to make it sound like I am in the classroom with them teaching from my Clevertouch so it feels as normal as possible for them. The only difference is that I sometimes have small assistants, a three year old (Ella) and five year old (Evelyn), who like to chime in and "help" teach every now and then,” said Harroun.
Jeff Shillinger, Matherville Intermediate Principal was impressed by Harroun’s dedication. “She answered student questions with individual videos often, taught new material, used humor… Had kids and dogs in her videos, complimented students often,” he said she even had student participation by allowing them to do her morning announcements.
When students had questions, she made specific videos tailored to them, “So I can walk them through their questions. This is the closest that I have gotten to work one-on-one with them which is so important,” she said.
A screenshot of Harroun walking a student through an example on their math work using Kami
and Vidyard to write comments on their assignment.
Harroun had five different math Google classrooms plus one just for her Homeroom group.
“I have really tried to create a fun, and inviting space for my homeroom students to share with one another. When the Heart Hunters social media page first became popular, I showed students what my girls and I had created for our neighbors. I also encouraged my students to do the same and to share. We have shared pictures of dress up days, fun outside activities, algebraic sidewalk chalk problems, pictures of our pets, and many others.”
Every morning she did a quick video with the kids to get their day started.
“Usually my daughters are right there with me, but one morning my husband (Nate) pretended to be my substitute teacher. I think that has been one of the favorites,” she laughed.
She said it was tricky to balance online teaching with two small kids at home.
“I honestly just feel like I try to do my best reaching my students while being mom at the same time.”
Cala Smoldt, District Journalist