Yikes, I Need to Teach Online

Teacher Editorial | By Lise Pethybridge (BOLT student)

How do we hook and keep students motivated in online programs?


You are a middle school teacher who has been hired to work at an online school. You love technology, you love using it with your students, and you feel that this new teaching environment will allow you to use your expertise and teaching strategies to serve students. However you still have so many questions.

How will you know your students and know that they are ready to learn? How will you interact with your students, how will they interact with each other and how will they know you are present and available to help? How will you motivate them to participate and complete their courses? Continue reading “Yikes, I Need to Teach Online”

Why I Can’t Say “Good Job;” How to Build Students’ Personal Confidence in Learning

Teacher Editorial | By Emily Wong (BOLT student)

“Is this okay?”

steamIn teaching within the abstract nature of English Language Arts, I’d definitely been on the receiving end of students with nervous and stressed-out requests for validation and approval(whether that’s an initial phase of trepidation, or throughout a learning process). Even as I embrace my role as an online teacher, these queries may take on a different forms(in terms of emails, discussion posts, or phone calls), but at the core highlight the same main issue: students who lack confidence and surety in their learning.

Educators often encounter numerous examples of students who lose or have lost confidence in their abilities, whether that’s due to personal beliefs about learning, anxiety, reliance on external factors, or repeated failures in classroom tasks. Although students may seek out external and immediate feedback(i.e. “Is my idea good? What do you think?”) these requests is largely teacher-centric and doesn’t allow student agency and onus over confidence in learning and acquisition of self-efficacy strategies. Continue reading “Why I Can’t Say “Good Job;” How to Build Students’ Personal Confidence in Learning”