Connecting with Students in the Virtual Biology Classroom – Podcast Episode 209 | Classnotes Podcast 209

Classnotes Podcast (April 6, 2021). At the core of IDRA’s philosophy is the recognition that each student is a unique and whole human being and should be treated as such. Our guest for this episode is Annabel Saenz Cruz who teaches ninth-grade biology at Palmview High School in La Joya ISD.

She joins Classnotes to discuss the most valuable tool in keeping students engaged in participation and learning: establishing personal connection with them as unique human beings. She also discusses practical strategies in teaching difficult concepts through virtual learning, especially with English learners, as well as the necessity of technological literacy. Annabel was interviewed by Aurelio Montemayor, M.Ed., Family Engagement Coordinator.

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Show length: 28:33 min.


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Show Notes

  • Annabel talks about how she and her colleagues prepared to teach virtually prior to the start of the school year.

  • Annabel discusses how technology is helpful for explaining some difficult scientific concepts, while other areas of the curriculum – like vocabulary – can be more challenging to teach in a virtual environment.

  • Annabel considers the technology skills her students are developing through online learning, and how these skills can be applied even when they return to an in-person setting.

  • Annabel encourages her colleagues to embrace the change that the virtual classroom has brought, and why it will make them stronger teachers in the long run.

  • Annabel shares some of her best practices for keeping students engaged in an online environment.

  • Annabel talks about the importance of being accessible to parents and taking the time to build genuine personal connections with them.