Moving to Hybrid Learning

No matter how you slice it, my classroom in September will not look like any previous Septembers. I don’t know if we’re going to be completely digital, completely in person with 6 foot distances and masks, or some kind of weird hybrid/chimera situation.

The two hybrids I saw floating around are daily hybrids – half of the kids in school on odd days, the rest in on even days – and weekly hybrids – half of the kids in one week and the other half the week later. I’m not going to belabor the pros and cons of each of these models – I’ll leave that to the muckety mucks – but I have to get my groove on and start planning.

Let’s assume there’s going to be a hybrid situation. That means that I’m covering the curriculum in person twice – once with each half of my students. While they’re not with me, they need to have standards based curricular content that they can work with. The home time has to continue to move the curriculum forward, or else I only cover half of the curriculum all year.

Sounds alien? No. We’ve been doing it all along. We used to call it “Flipped Learning” and “Station Model.” Now we’re calling it “Hybrid.” Same stuff, different day.

Let’s imagine we’re on a daily hybrid situation. Day 1 – students in class. Day 2- students working on materials at home (while I’m doing Day 1 with the other half of the kids). Day 3- back in school. Day 4 – back at home.

A good general format might be:

  • Day 1 – in school – introduce concepts, do an introductory lab, teach new skill.
  • Day 2 – at home – learn and practice vocab, write lab analysis, practice skill.
  • Day 3 – in school – group activities or discussions, whole class review, another lab.
  • Day 4 – at home – assessment.

The trick to planning, I think, is separating which activities must be done in school from the activities that can be done at home and then sequencing them so that students will have learned the requisite skills and concepts before they have to practice them at home.

If we move to a week by week hybrid, perhaps the plan is:

  • Week 1 – in school – introduce concepts, do labs, teach skills, review.
  • Week 2 – at home – practice vocab and skills, write lab analysis, take assessment.

Again, the most challenging piece to teachers is going to be ensuring that students have learned the skills and concepts before they go home. Another challenge with the weekly hybrid is that teachers will be working double duty – monitoring home students and assisting as needed more frequently than if the rotation was daily. Imagine the student who practiced a skill wrong for an entire week – you’ve got to catch the mistakes early before they become irreversible.

Here’s a first draft of hybrid lessons I designed for my atomic structure unit. I’d love your feedback. In the mean time, let me know what your school is thinking.

Published by JustAddH2OTeacher

Science teacherpreneur

4 thoughts on “Moving to Hybrid Learning

  1. I’m guessing we’ll know more about what our school is doing next week. Right now, we are in limbo. Our state released a laughable pdf giving us “guidance” about how we should be returning to learn. I hope our school does a better job of keeping everyone safe.

    I hope you find the right mix in your job! This is not an easy time for anyone! 🙁

    1. When it was time to close, the State was the ultimate decider. “Can’t close until the State says so” and “Have to close now that the state said so.” Now that it’s time to think about reopening, it’s “Every district for itself.” I get that it is a nearly impossible situation for everyone, and that any decision you make is going to anger someone. But that’s sort of your job.

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