SAN DIEGO — It's the first week of distance learning for San Diego Unified School District, and teachers said they are learning just as much as the students as they move their classrooms online.
“Thank you all first of all for being in here. I’ve been a teacher for over 21 years," said Reuben Hoffman, Project Based Learning Resource Teacher for SDUSD.
Hoffman started his daily Zoom lesson for instructors with his introduction as he lead the lesson from his home gym room. He showed the facets of the “Google Classroom” while presenting PowerPoint slides and website pages to a session full of teachers.
“The challenge is the technology. The challenge is not the desire of the teachers to do this,” Hoffman said.
Hoffman is literally teaching teachers how to teach their classes online. He said there are a number of instructors stepping up to the new learning curve.
“We have different levels of teachers. Teachers who have not used any technology and this is a huge hurdle for them, and teachers who are fast with new tech and have been ready to go,” he said.
The online teacher courses are filling up, ranging from 50 to one class having 4,000 in attendance. Instruction lasts about one hour. San Diego Unified offers 20 classes for teachers each day.
Hoffman and about 13 other resource teachers take questions just like in a real classroom setting as teachers have already begun providing online lessons to students.
“We’re offering a lot of different sessions, but is it enough?” Hoffman said.
Hoffman showed how through the Google Classroom teachers can provide their students a code to unlock specific assignments. He said the new lessons are not ideal, but are today’s teachers' reality.
“We’re all in crisis mode. Now we have to do anything for the best way to get students to learn,” Hoffman said.
The sessions offer classes for Canvas and SeeSaw platforms students are used to. In the coming week, courses will be offering curriculum specific to class subjects.