Our support for teachers working remotely during COVID-19
The Royal Society of Chemistry is offering a wide range of teaching resources and support for teachers working remotely during the coronavirus pandemic, including free professional development courses.
We have also asked for your thoughts in a survey about what support you need, so we can adapt what we are offering to suit you – our community – best during these challenging times.
All resources are available for free if you register on the RSC Education website.
“The RSC’s Education website has always been my go-to place, but the speed at which the RSC has got so much support up and running is extraordinary. Looking at the website there is already a tab with vast amounts of remote teaching support there – it’s got all these articles that keep you sane, bits of advice that you can trust and loads of resources that you can use everywhere.
“I’ve used the online timetable to organise myself, and it’s good to read the articles that reassure me that what I’m doing is fine, and those that share level-headed ideas from other people. Last week I attended a Q&A drop-in – it was brilliant to see all the resources explained, but also for someone who lives completely on their own and is unable to see other people it was a social link to the chemistry world. For me, just having that ability to just drop in with other people in the chemistry community is a massive thing.”
Dedicated resources for remote teaching
We are pleased to see that our education website is incredibly popular at this time, and have set up a page dedicated to remote teaching.
On this page, you can find curriculum-relevant resources and activities such as worksheets, videos and simulated experiments which students can run on their computer or tablet. These are all broken down into three age groups – 11-14, 14-16, and 16-18 – to keep your classes learning remotely at a level that suits them best.
There is also a range of support guides and hints and tips available to help you get the most out of lessons, such as ideas how to maintain pupil practical skills while schools are closed.
We will be continually expanding and updating the content, with more relevant activities and recommendations being added every Wednesday.
Online events: webinars and Q&A’s
While face-to-face events may be cancelled across the country, your education coordinators will be delivering a programme of online events for you to take part in, including webinars and Q&A sessions.
These range from website walkthroughs to practical advice on teaching specific age groups remotely and guides on specific resources, such as teaching a titration remotely.
There are also Q&A and sharing sessions where you can come along with your own questions and discuss your ideas with other teachers.
Find out what sessions are coming up this week using our timetable, and at the time of the session, click on the corresponding link to join. All drop-in sessions are run via Zoom, so you can easily join from your computer or mobile device without downloading any additional software.
All teachers are welcome – so please invite your colleagues!
“The RSC webinars are a really nice way to get in touch with people when you are isolated. It’s good to hear people talk and think “oh, I’ve had that experience too, that’s an interesting way of dealing with it”, or even discuss things I hadn’t considered yet – such as what we can do to help the transition for when students eventually return having not been in formal lessons for months.
“There was a wide range of participants – from teachers to students and mentors. For a lot of people attending an online webinar was a new experience, but now that we can’t leave the house I would really encourage people to say “I’ll try it.” It’s a really useful skill and really easy to log on and attend for however long you can fit around your other responsibilities.”
Free professional development courses
We are fully funding all nine of our online professional development courses until the end of August – six of which normally require payment.
Teachers can visit the online courses webpage to access course material at a time when you need it most.
Each course provides focused, comprehensive information, as well as resources and ideas to support classroom activities, and insights best pedagogical practice. We have designed all nine courses to be useful to both chemistry specialists and non-specialists, experienced teachers and those new to teaching alike.
Six of the courses are technically-focussed, covering redox, analytical, quantitative, materials and carbon chemistry, alongside one course on energy and change.
The remaining three develop underpinning skills, and are focussed on maths, developing and using models, and effective pedagogy.
“In the current climate remote learning has become an essential aspect of daily life, making these online courses more relevant than ever.
“The courses provide a flexible service that can be used to develop teachers’ skills and expertise anytime or anywhere. At a time when we are all learning a new way of working, I’m sure teachers will be aiming to find the best ways to help their students – and these courses will provide an ideal chance for them to do that.”
Our new careers campaign called "Chemistry: Making the difference", is designed to inspire teenagers to study chemistry and pursue careers in the chemical sciences. It is based around a series of videos and careers profiles showing the wide range of possibilities available to people who have studied chemistry. Discover more on the new “A Future in Chemistry” website.
We will be developing more resources specifically for teachers and schools, so keep an eye out for more communications about those.