How to Close the Learning Gap Caused by COVID-19

Students going through their K-12 education amid a global pandemic find themselves further behind benchmarks set by kids before them. Not only have school closures taken a toll on students’ achievement, but the stress and lack of resources for students learning at home have made it so many students are leaving lockdown having made little progress in their time learning from home. 

The question now remains: How can teachers help close the learning gap caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and help students get back on the right path to academic success?

While it’s still up for debate on just how far behind students will end up being, you can take a few active steps to help assess how your students are doing and make active attempts to rectify their learning trajectory.

First, Be Proud of Yourself

While it’s easy to get hung up on the fact that your students are struggling due to the COVID-19 pandemic, you shouldn’t let yourself get too overwhelmed in worrying you caused it. On the contrary, 93% of educators surveyed expressed great pride in adapting to the needs of COVID-19 friendly classrooms. 

Teachers have found ways to approach digital learning and leverage technologies in ways they never have before. Not only has COVID-19 showed many teachers that they can continue to learn and try new things in the classroom, but it has exposed many teachers to more nuanced conversations about necessities in the classroom. 

Many teachers expressed the need for less time spent focusing on standardized testing and more time focusing on core grade-level standard concepts to ensure students are leaving a grade with the most knowledge possible. 

One great way to balance out the needs of the state with your own desire to allow students to focus on what truly matters with the limited time they have is by using our tools at De Alba Math Center. We have STAAR-ready workbooks that you can give students and work on as homework, letting you get together with instructional videos and review courses without exposing the students to a severely heightened workload. 

Besides our handy test preparation tools, you can take multiple other steps to ensure your students are prepared for post-pandemic learning. Keep reading to find out more. 

Focus On Mental Health 

Every single student you teach has been adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Many students have experienced loss for the first time in their lives, and many more are now taking care of siblings and a household as their parents’ balance work life and family. 

Even pre-pandemic, there has been growing concern about the need to focus on youth mental health. The COVID-19 pandemic has made the implementation of mental health awareness even more necessary. Focus on listening to students when they bring up their mental health concerns and make an effort to integrate social-emotional learning into the classroom. 

What is social-emotional learning? This is a concept where you, as the teacher, help the children in your classroom understand and manage their emotions through positive goal setting and empathy toward others. It goes hand-in-hand with cultural awareness in the classroom, but implementing an SEL focus in your classroom is one great way to ensure your students are prepared for the immeasurable challenges they face in catching up with their peers post-COVID-19. 

In short, it’s important for you to consider how your students are doing mentally, as they’ve likely never thought to think about their mental health before now. Keep their mental and emotional health in mind as you begin new assignments and projects, and check-in with them, more than ever before. 

Personalized Learning Is A Must

Now more than ever, teachers can implement more individualized learning with students with easier access to technology. While many districts still aren’t able to provide students with the necessary technology, using that technology to implement individualized learning plans is a great way to motivate students to take on the challenges that come with falling behind in learning. 

Tailored learning allows you as the teacher to assess a student’s strengths and areas of improvement, and using their interests, help them achieve learning through content they enjoy and at a pace that works well for them. 

Digital tools are an excellent way to administer assessments to see a student’s academic achievement without feeling the need to hold every student to the same standard as each other. Focusing on providing each student with what they need to thrive is your goal as a teacher. In a post-pandemic world, this is more important than ever before.

Utilize Technology For Student Success

As we’ve previously discussed, you have more technology at your disposal now more than ever before, and you should be using it to the furthest extent, even post-pandemic. 

At DeAlba Math Center, our solutions allow access through Microsoft Teams, Summit Learning, and Google Classroom, where students can access our instructional videos and print De Alba Math-handouts and foldables. We also provide printed resources like workbooks for students to use as consumables.

You can utilize technology too by using our instructional videos and STAAR preparation materials, which integrate flawlessly with digital classroom technology. Technology is here to make your life easier, helping you focus on individualized learning plans for your students playing catch-up, both academically and emotionally. 

Check out all of our course offerings here today, and let us help take the burden of the educational gap off your shoulders. 


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