Thursday, September 24, 2020


I'm still in that co-teaching position, and last week was all about testing. I described it a bit last week, so I won't again go into the whys and wherefores.

Keep in mind that we are doing the distance learning thing. Plus, this was a completely new testing platform that none of us had ever used before. In addition, there were technical issues that cropped up either from the distance thing or from the new testing platform (sometimes both). 

We created a "break out room" for students who had issues to go to. This was separate from the regular Google Meet. (So, I could have them show me their screen and we could work through whatever was holding them up.) 

Third period. Alvin was having issues. I took him into the "break out room", and I tried to troubleshoot. 

Let me back up a bit. Ms. W was working the testing platform, so she asked me to greet the students and instruct them on getting into the test. She had to confirm them from her end before they could begin. 

Because I was the one speaking to the class, Ms. W had muted her computer. When we're in the same room (separated at a distance, of course), it's distracting for the person speaking to hear their voice coming out of another computer. There's a lag as well. If you've ever had an echo while you're talking on the phone to somebody, you know what I mean. 

So, when I went to work with Alvin, I quieted the other room. Mostly, the kiddos have their microphones off as well as their cameras, and when they have a question, they type it into the chat. Ms. W was monitoring the chat while Alvin and I dealt with his issues. 

Did you know Firefox and Google Meet don't play nice with one another? Alvin couldn't share his screen with me, and while I knew what he needed to do to get his computer to work, explaining it was a bit hard. But eventually, he got things going. Then I was free to go back to the main meet room. 

And as soon as I got there, I heard a voice: "I need to go eat. Can I go eat? I really need to go eat." 

It was clear that Jacob had been whining like that for some time. 

And. . . I mean, if you're not getting a response, wouldn't you realize that maybe no one (besides the other students in the class) can hear you? I suppose, though, that this is more thought than Jacob gave it.

Although, I'm surprised he asked at all. There was another student who wasn't logging into the test, and he wasn't responding on the chat, so Ms. W called his house. His mother informed Ms. W that the kiddo was downstairs watching TV. 

Somehow, we managed to get most of the kiddos tested. Ah, the joys of education.


  1. This should involve a special kind of hazard pay (hindrance pay?)

  2. What an ordeal. Some people just like whining.

  3. Too bad more parents don't know they can opt out of standardized testing! With all the uncertainty, I really doubt students are at their best. Of course, when my kids were in CA, and at their best, I always opted them out! I guess teachers still can't tell the parents they have that option?

    1. That's above my pay grade. I just do what they tell me.

  4. We are dealing with a brave new world. The age of technology has made things very interesting for schools, hasn’t it?

    1. It has. It's been a boon for the blog. Not so much for the students, though.

  5. Why didn't the mom get the kid off of watching TV and back to school work?

    I like the idea of the "break out room". Everyone is getting so clever with coming up with things for virtual learning.


  6. And the mum didn't think it odd that said kiddo wasn't in class? Explains why kiddo wasn't in the class really, doesn't it.


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