Preparing for Fall 2020: Blended and Online Learning

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.

I’ve designed a self-paced online course to support teachers who are trying to prepare for the fall. The course is composed of six modules. Each module consists of four video lessons, action items, and templates, resources, and links to related readings. The action items encourage teachers to take what they learned in the video lessons to create resources they can use with students. Below is the breakdown of the course content.

Module 1: Teaching Presence–Designing Your Blended/Online Course

  • Lesson 1: Design Your Course Syllabus
  • Lesson 2: Set Up Your Virtual Classroom
  • Lesson 3: Curriculum Mapping for First Semester
  • Lesson 4: Helping Students Get (and Stay) Organized

Module 2: Teaching Presence–Designing Blended/Online Lessons

  • Lesson 1: Explore the Building Blocks of a Blended/Online Lesson
  • Lesson 2: Formative Assessment Strategies
  • Lesson 3: Differentiation
  • Lesson 4: Student Agency

Module 3: Teaching Presence–Blended/Online Instruction

  • Introduction: Synchronous vs. Asynchronous Instruction
  • Lesson 1: Asynchronous Instruction–Tips for Creating Strong Video Content & Engaging Students Around that Instruction
  • Lesson 2: Flip & Engage–Design a Three-Part Flipped Lesson
  • Lesson 3: Synchronous Instruction with Video Conferencing

Module 4: Teaching Presence: Facilitating Learning Online

  • Lesson 1: Designing Dynamic Discussion Questions
  • Lesson 2: Teaching Students to Say Something Substantial
  • Lesson 3: Deciding on a Realistic Facilitation Role
  • Lesson 4: Facilitating Synchronous Online Discussions

Module 5: Social Presence–Building Community Online

  • Lesson 1: Creating a Safe Space Online
  • Lesson 2: Getting to Know Your Students Online
  • Lesson 3: Building Community with Online Icebreakers
  • Lesson 4: Checking-in and Asking for Feedback

Module 6: Cognitive Presence–Student-centered Blended/Online Learning

  • Lesson 1: The Station Rotation Model
  • Lesson 2: Choice Boards
  • Lesson 3: Playlist Model
  • Lesson 4: 5Es Learning Experience

My goal was to create a course that would help teachers to develop higher levels of confidence as they approach the new school year. Research has established a clear connection between teachers’ feelings of self-efficacy, their level of engagement at work, and their job satisfaction (Granziera & Perera, 2019). Teachers who report higher levels of self-efficacy are:

  • more confident when faced with obstacles or setbacks,
  • take more risks,
  • experiment with innovative approaches to design and facilitation,
  • and are more satisfied with their work (Allinder, 1994; Coladarci, 1992; Dembo & Gibson, 1985; Granziera & Perera, 2019; Klassen & Chiu, 2010; Tschannen-Moran et al., 1998).

I hope this course will help teachers to feel more confident in their abilities to face the unknown this coming school year.

A certificate for 30 continuing education units (CEUs) is available for anyone who completes the entire course. It will be issued automatically when a teacher has completed the course.

School leaders interested in purchasing multiple licenses for your teachers can complete this form.

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30 Responses to Preparing for Fall 2020: Blended and Online Learning

  1. PattyRenner says:

    What is the cost?

    • Hi Patty,

      The course is currently on sale for $75 for individual purchase. There is also a link to a form that school leaders can fill out if they are interested in buying multiple licenses.

      Take care.

  2. Leatriz Covington says:

    Good morning. Is there a price list for the licenses? Thank you.

  3. Tracy Enos says:

    This looks very exciting!! I have 2 questions. Number one, would you consider this to be an introductory course or something that would also benefit a teacher who has some experience with blended learning/ playlists/ hyperdocs? Number two, how long do students have access to the materials?
    I find your work and resources so inspiring and helpful!
    Thank you for what you do!!

    • Hi Tracy,

      Yes, I think this course is more of an introduction. I am hoping to do a “next level” follow up at some point if there is a demand for that.

      Teachers will have ongoing access to the course after purchasing 😊

      Thank you for your kind words about my work!

      Take care!

  4. Lisa Russo says:

    Is there a reduced price for buying multiple licenses?

  5. Tearra says:

    How long do teachers have access to the course after purchasing it?

  6. Megan Adams says:

    What grade levels would you feel this is geared toward? K-12 or something more specific?

  7. Marilyn says:

    I teach Pre-K and we will be doing eLearning and Virtual at the beginning of the year. Will this course cover strategies that can be used with that age group?

    • Hi Marilyn,

      I have spent the last four months working with PreK-12, so I believe there are strategies in the course that would be useful to PreK. That said, I designed it with K-12 in mind.

      Let me know if you have additional questions!

      Take care.

  8. Marybeth Scherf says:

    What grade levels/ages is this most appropriate for?

  9. Natalia Barbera says:

    Is the course mainly for k-12 classes/instructors or could it be applied to higher ed classes?

  10. Anthony says:

    Hi! Approx how many hours would it take to complete the 6 Modules?

  11. Kristen says:

    Hi! My school is going the hybrid method, which means we’ll have students live in class and some watching from home via zoom and others totally online. Would this be helpful?

    • Hi Kristen,

      Yes, I believe it would be useful as you prepare. You can review the course content and lesson topics to make the final decision, but the skills covered are designed to help teachers be successful in a blended or online course.

      Let me know if you have any additional questions.


  12. Patricia McKenna says:

    Do you accept purchase orders from schools?

  13. Louise Weston says:

    How many hours do you expect this course to take (obviously recognizing that there will be variants depending on different start points of understanding)?
    I have asked my district for PD units for doing the course but they are querying that this is equivalent to 30 CEUs and how I will have evidenced this learning.

    • Hi Louise,

      It is estimated to take 30 hours to work through the six modules (videos and action items). You will receive a certificate of completion when you are done that you can show your district.

      Take care.

  14. Lori Janicki says:

    Hi. My school is interested in buying 7 licenses. Is there a discount? My principal put me in charge of our school’s cohort. How do we register?

    • Hi Lori,

      If you fill out the form at the bottom of the blog post for bulk purchases, you will hear directly from one of the people handling the sales. They can answer questions about the cost and registration.

      Let me know if you need anything else. I hope you and your teacher enjoy the course!

      Take care.

  15. Chris Donohue says:

    Hi Catlin,

    Your course is wonderful! I find it to be a road map for the steps in lesson planning that I need to take to be ready for the school year. Going through this course is just like having you as a personal instructional coach. It is definitely time well spent. The way you organized the modules is so helpful!

    I just finished Module 3 and I have a couple of questions:
    1. After viewing your example of how to teach a vocabulary lesson, would this be the only lesson you would post for that day of learning in reading? (in an ELA class) In an earlier module you mentioned that we won’t be able to pack as many activities into a day as we do in the brick-and-mortar setting. I am trying to gauge if that is just one daily activity.
    2. When organizing the folder for the week, could there be a reading activity and a separate writing activity? They are taught as 2 separate courses in a block of time, but I think it will be easier for students if it is located in one folder .

    Thank you so much for creating this course!

    • Hi Chris,

      I’m thrilled to hear you are enjoying the course! Depending on the scope of the pre and post-video activities and the length of the video, I think it is realistic to do all three in a single online lesson. If you are worried about the time and overloading students, you may want to engage them in the pre-video activity and video lesson on one day and the post-video extend and apply activity can take place on the following day. It is flexible. I’d recommend assuming everything will take longer than we expect at the beginning then, as students acclimate to the online learning routines, you can increase the load.

      Yes, I don’t see any reason why a reading activity cannot be paired with a writing activity! If you think it is easier for them to locate the activities if they are in the same folder, then do what you think will work best for them.

      Let me know if you have any other questions as you continue to work through the course!


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