The changeover to remote learning for the earth science courses was very challenging. The biggest hurdle was writing new laboratory exercises to achieve the course outcomes for the semester.
I always run class trips where the students collect and analyze samples on their own so changing that dynamic took a lot of creativity.
The Earth Science Aide, Timothy Shamus, put together a collection of virtual class trips for the students using Canvas Studio. My classes had the opportunity to explore topics or geographic locations and answer embedded quiz questions about coral reefs, hydrothermal vents, the intertidal zone, Sterling Mine, and even the largest wave ever surfed.
The best part of the changeover to remote learning was the students and their adaptability. I held lectures through Zoom and we worked on laboratory exercises together. The students are great. It was a big learning curve for both the students and me — we worked together to figure out what was going to be the best way for us to move forward and be successful as a class.
It was fun to see their parents drop into a Zoom screen and start asking questions about the topic, their children running around, and their pets jumping on them during lecture.
Finally, the eLearning team has been great. Shannon, Desiree, and Mike respond to emails immediately and help you work your way through any glitches. Without their tutorials on Zoom and Canvas Studio, my success in remote learning would be much different.
All that being said I can’t wait to get back to campus!