Catlin Tucker

Combatting the Challenges of the Concurrent Classroom with the Station Rotation Model

Catlin Tucker

I’ve been a fan of the station rotation model for years. As I support teachers struggling to navigate the demands of the concurrent classroom, I find myself continually returning to the station rotation model as a strategy to design and facilitate learning for this challenging teaching assignment.

Design a Choose Your Own Adventure Learning Experience

Catlin Tucker

It’s only two months into the school year, and teachers are exhausted. This year has made everyone, regardless of their years of experience, feel like a brand new teacher. Teachers are designing learning experiences for a range of learning landscapes.

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Support Online Learning with Powerful Thinking Routines

Catlin Tucker

Project Zero at Harvard’s Graduate School of Education has created a collection of Core Thinking Routines as part of their Visible Thinking Project. Teachers can view the entire collection on the Project Zero website , where each routine is described in detail (e.g.,

Back to Basics: Lesson Planning for the Concurrent Classroom

Catlin Tucker

Teachers juggling the concurrent classroom with some students physically attending class and others joining remotely via video conferencing are trying to balance the demands of teaching in two learning landscapes simultaneously.

SplashLearn Makes Learning Fun and Creates Fearless Learners

Loved by more than 30 million kids, SplashLearn is a game-based learning program that creates engaging learning experiences to nurture a generation of fearless learners. SplashLearn is the fastest growing elementary school math program in the US, used by more than 440,000 teachers in about 77,000 schools across the United States.

The Why, How, and What of Blended Learning

Catlin Tucker

The events of the last nine months have launched the phrase “blended learning” into the mainstream.

Asynchronous vs. Synchronous: How to Design for Each Type of Learning

Catlin Tucker

This school year will look very different for most teachers. Some are beginning entirely online and others are returning to school on a modified schedule where they will only see students in person a couple of days a week.

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Video Conferencing: Establishing Routines and Structuring Online Time with Students

Catlin Tucker

I had the pleasure of chatting with Linwood Paul, an executive coach, for an episode of my podcast, The Balance. In the final moments of our conversation, I asked him what advice he had for achieving a work-life balance at this moment when many of us are both living and working in our homes.

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10 Strategies Designed to Engage Elementary Students Online

Catlin Tucker

A few weeks ago, I published a blog titled “ 8 Ideas Designed to Engage Students In Active Learning Online.” ” I had several elementary teachers request that I work on a similar blog focused on younger learners.

Synchronous Online Discussions: Preparation, Facilitation & Wrap Up

Catlin Tucker

Discussion is a cornerstone of any learning community. Students construct and confirm meaning, in part, through dialogue with their peers.

5 Costly Inventory Management Mistakes Schools Should Avoid

If your school is like most, inventory and/or asset management plays a critical role in daily operations.

A Flipped Learning Flow for Blended or Online Classes

Catlin Tucker

As teachers prepare for a new school year, many are brushing up on their video production skills. Teachers know there will be times when they will need to lean on videos to allow students to access information asynchronously. Video has several benefits in a blended or online course.

Need Inspiration Designing Station Rotation Lessons for your Math, English, History, or Science Class?

Catlin Tucker

As teachers navigate online learning, hybrid schedules, or the demands of the concurrent classroom, I’ve recommended the station rotation model.

Teaching in the Concurrent Classroom: Four Strategies to Make it Work

Catlin Tucker

On Thursday night, I presented a 30-minute webinar with AJ Juliani for educators focused on the concurrent classroom.

Farewell, 2020: Lessons Learned

Catlin Tucker

When I was in college, I started writing a holiday newsletter to include with my Christmas cards. My mother had always written a newsletter, so it seemed a natural way to reflect on the year. It also provided friends and family with an update on my life in a pre-social media world.

Develop A Feature-Rich App for Any Virtual Classroom

Building an e-learning platform? Download the solution brief to learn how you can create a customized, feature-rich, interactive classroom for an enhanced learning experience.

Universal Design for Learning and Blended Learning: Action and Expression

Catlin Tucker

In my last blog, I focused on the Universal Design for Learning (UDL) principle of representation. I described how blended and online learning can help educators provide opportunities for students to perceived and engage with information presented in multiple modalities.

Enhance Student Engagement with Virtual Social Learning Spaces

Catlin Tucker

When I ask teachers, “How would you describe a successful online or blended learning course? What would that look like?” ” Most teachers include some form of the word “engagement” in their answers.

Universal Design for Learning and Blended Learning: Engagement

Catlin Tucker

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a framework that is based on a scientific understanding of how people learn. The goal of UDL is to design “barrier-free, instructionally rich learning environments and lessons that provide access to all students” (Nelson, 2).

The Concurrent Classroom: Using Blended Learning Models to Teach Students In-person and Online Simultaneously

Catlin Tucker

Teachers all over the country are being asked to teach “concurrent classrooms” in which some students attend class in person and others attend virtually. The teacher in a concurrent classroom attempts to meet the needs of the students in class and online simultaneously.

8 Reasons to Invest in a New Student Information System

If your school’s SIS has limited functions, only works on campus or breaks down more than you would like, it might time to invest in a new one.

Preparing for Fall 2020: Blended and Online Learning

Catlin Tucker

2020-2021 promises to be an unpredictable school year. Most of the teachers I know, including my husband and most of my friends, are not sure whether they will be returning to school on a hybrid schedule or teaching entirely online. That is making it a challenge to prepare for the new school year.

3 Tips for Building Community Online

Catlin Tucker

Last week, my class of teacher candidates explored the topic of building an online learning community. We talked about the importance of nurturing a learning community over time and providing regular opportunities for students to engage with each other to build relationships.

8 Ideas Designed to Engage Students In Active Learning Online

Catlin Tucker

I’ve spent the last four months working with teachers all over the country (virtually, of course) as they navigate the uncharted waters of online and blended learning. The majority of teachers I have spoken with did not enjoy their initial experiences with distance learning. A big issue for many teachers was a general lack of student engagement online.

Station Rotation in an Era of Social Distancing

Catlin Tucker

Teachers are preparing for an uncertain future. Many are unsure if they will be returning to school on a traditional schedule, a blended learning schedule, or completely online. Teachers are questioning how the instructional strategies they have used in the past will work if students are coming to school on a modified schedule or if they are learning online.

7 Benefits of Lesson Plans in the Cloud

What if teachers didn’t have to lug tons of paperwork with them to and from work? Having lesson plans available anywhere is just one of the advantages.

Blended Learning: Building a Playlist

Catlin Tucker

At the start of a virtual workshop last week, a teacher sent me a note in the chat saying that she wanted to quit. She was frustrated and exhausted. This is a sentiment I’ve repeatedly heard this year as I work with educators who are teaching online, on hybrid schedules, or juggling the demands of the concurrent classroom. I worry about the impact that this moment in education is having on teacher engagement.

The Building Blocks of an Online Lesson

Catlin Tucker

Even though teaching online may feel like a different animal than teaching face-to-face, there are many similarities in terms of the building blocks of a lesson. The tools teachers use to engage students online are indeed different. It is also true that engaging students in learning activities online will require (at least initially) that teachers onboard students to those technology tools and support them in learning how to navigate online tasks.

Traits of a Successful Online Teacher

Catlin Tucker

Last week, I had the good fortune of stumbling onto John Savery’s article titled “BE VOCAL: Characteristics of Successful Online Instructors” in which he talks about the unique challenges facing teachers who are working with students in the online environment. Savery uses the acronym VOCAL to emphasize five specific traits that a successful online teacher must possess.

3 Strategies for Personalizing Feedback Online

Catlin Tucker

Feedback is one of the most powerful tools teachers have in their “teaching toolbelts” for guiding learners toward mastery. Without feedback, students do not have a clear sense of what they are doing well, what they need to focus on, and what they can do to improve. Despite the power of timely and actionable feedback, it is easy to neglect. Providing feedback is time-consuming and often takes a back seat to other aspects of our work.

Why Families Leave Schools

Do you know three of the biggest reasons families leave schools? Here they are – and what you can do about it.

Offline Choice Boards: How Are You Integrating Offline Learning into Your Online Class?

Catlin Tucker

Schools in California will not reopen this year. Teachers are scrambling to move their offline courses online to ensure that students continue learning for the remainder of the school year. Understandably, the focus is on online learning as that is a new and unfamiliar learning landscape for a lot of educators. I am fielding questions about how to set up online courses , design online lessons , and offer small group instruction and support via video conferencing.

A Conferencing Strategy for Online, Blended, or Concurrent Classes

Catlin Tucker

When I began my career in education, I believed the value I brought to the classroom was my subject area expertise cultivated as an English major at UCLA and my pedagogical expertise honed while working on my teaching credential and Masters in Education.

3 Ways to Use Video Conferencing with Students Learning Remotely

Catlin Tucker

Thank goodness for Zoom and Google Hangouts! During this time of social isolation and remote learning, these video conferencing tools are lifesavers. They make it possible for teachers to maintain a human connection with their students and guide their learning from a distance. Below are three suggestions for using these video conferencing platforms to continue teaching students as they learn remotely. #1 1 Small Group Instruction.

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Health and Wellness Choice Boards for Teachers and Students

Catlin Tucker

On Saturday, I wrote a blog sharing an offline choice board teachers can use to blend offline activities into their online classes. On Twitter, Barbara McInnes suggested teachers add a wellness activity to their offline choice boards. I loved her suggestion and immediately started working on a choice board dedicated to health and wellness activities. I asked my good friend, Dr. Maria Hersey , to lend her expertise around social-emotional learning to this project.

How Online Admissions Affect Enrollment Rates

Discover the top five reasons your school’s admissions should be online.