The typical reader of my occasional blog posts is probably not so much the target of this one. You know this stuff. I’m writing to those students and teachers out there who don’t feel comfortable “going remote” and teaching/learning from a distance. And you may soon be forced to do so.
I want you to know that I absolutely love working remotely.
And I don’t think the idea of “pivoting” in person classes to online is really much different from a “regular job” switching to remote. We can do it and it we can enjoy it. I spent two years working remotely in my laundry room and would do it again in a heartbeat
Let’s talk about the benefits:
- You can wear sweatpants. Or your HufflePuff robes. Or an inflatable chicken outfit. The camera does not have to be on when you are in a live class or meeting.
- Click mute. Rip that burp/fart. un-mute.
- Camera off, mute… go get a snack or another coffee. No one knows or cares.
- The laundry gets the hell done.
- While you’re in that class or meeting, you can also much more blatantly also be in whichever back channels you’ve made for yourself and friends, keeping up with the real important details.
- The back-channels will be your digital hallway. Your shooting the shit skills will become innovative as all get out.
- Meetings become more collaborative. Don’t want to be the one speaking? Be the one fetching links to the things we’re talking about and copying them into the chat. Monitor the chat. Make connections.
- Your online classes can now have a lo-fi hip hop soundtrack if you like.
- Your ability, and your desire, to have quick meetings/chats with peers has gone way up. I’m far more likely to have an “in person” meeting digitally with a friend or colleague if I don’t have to go anywhere. And that person can be across the country. Maybe in like Mortlach, Saskatchewan or something.
- Got kids? You’re probably more in position to be flexible in school pick ups/drop offs and fulfill a few more of the million needs they have.
So you may find yourself digitally all over the place. In virtual meetings in Zoom/Webex/Skype. In collaborative workspaces in Slack/Teams/Discord. In your email inbox, LMS, on the socials. Lots of the time all those spaces at once.
Wherever you are digitally, you’re also right there where you can flip the laundry, pet the pupper, grab a free snack (just mute if it’s chips and salsa), turn up the heat, make eyes at your partner.
You’re not alone. The Digital People out there can help. They say things like this:
See you out there!