Updated: May 26, 2019
One of the top reasons I love teaching Recess online is because my classes integrate play into my work, daily. Teaching involves countless hours of creating. Generating concepts for new classes, planning and prepping materials, scheduling and advertising classes... behind the scenes of the virtual classroom there is a ton of preparation.
Then, there's class.
That's the point when I cross my fingers and go with the flow. It's a scary moment; but a magic one. I forget about what I'm going to do, and who I'm going to be, and I play.
I play tic tac toe six different ways, hangman, 20 questions, pictionary, charades, scavenger hunt... and at some point during all of that, I usually manage to do some relationship building. Sometimes I just witness it happen between my learners. Play creates brain chemicals that lay the foundation for deeper connection. No lecture will bring on social emotional learning in the same way that taking turns, or laughing about a game together will.
I love when parents walk into a game of online charades wondering "What happened to your computer class?" only to find that their kids are enthusiastically participating in social and physical play with other kids, all of them scattered around the world!
My idea of success in class: seeing a 16 year old's wide eye mortified looks transform into the most ridiculous silly face sign off.