Using Classroom Intervention to Address Learning Loss
Every educator expects some summer slide with students. But combined with the shift to remote learning caused by COVID-19, learning loss in summer 2021 will likely be even more considerable. To address that loss, many schools will turn to classroom intervention, tutoring, and outside-the-classroom instructional services.
Even more than usual, it’s critical that those efforts are focused. Here are six things to look for in your classroom intervention programs for this year (and beyond).
- Use content that’s research-based (and, ideally, proven in the field). A great intervention program is backed by research. It features elements of K-12 best practices, but isn’t necessarily defined by them to accommodate for different learning styles. If possible, choose a program or service that other schools have put into practice that have proven results. Odds are, you’ll be able to learn from those experiences and improve your intervention efforts before they’ve even started.
- Make sure results are measurable. How do you know classroom interventions are actually working? Is it enough to rely solely on a student’s report card? It’s a good idea to find additional ways to measure success (sometimes that means qualitative vs. quantitative data). Check in with your students to see if lessons are taking root, visit with teachers to learn about any changes in performance or classroom engagement, and make sure the entire experience is built around what students need.
- Create programs that are customizable for your school and students. As educators we appreciate the uniqueness of every student. Still, many intervention plans don’t account for that uniqueness. Having a baseline program or plan to start from isn’t a bad idea, but it needs to flexible enough to shift if you find that the content isn’t actually engaging the student. In addition, it’s a good idea to build your plan in a way that makes it easy to shift from in-person to remote intervention. Even if your school opens up to in-person education, flexibility is still key.
- Work with Title I teachers at your school. When you’re able to partner with the teachers you already know and trust, that’s one less obstacle you need to deal with. Having existing Title I teachers at your school handle intervention isn’t just convenient – it’s necessary for your students. These teachers know your students and the methods that are most likely to work on an individual level.
- Include resources outside of the intervention. The intervention itself should clearly meet each student’s needs. But ideally, it should go further. It should include resources and skills students can use to learn in better ways. Tools they can use in – and out – of the classes where they receive support.
- Focus on student strengths (and consider how they can improve them). Ultimately, classroom interventions are designed to do one thing: Strengthening areas of weakness exhibited by a student and close skills’ gaps. While that is the primary goal, you don’t lose sight of the things students are doing well. In addition to finding things to correct, look for areas students can improve on what they’re already doing right. This leads to a more well-rounded intervention experience, and helps increase a student’s confidence.
2020 changed things. Teachers felt it. Parents felt it. And, arguably, students felt it most of all. Whichever direction your classroom intervention efforts take, continue to be steadfast in meeting the needs of every student while remaining empathetic. Keep in mind that the ultimate goal is not just to get students through their classes, but to set a solid foundation for the rest of their life.
FACTS Education Solutions offers Instructional Services that work perfectly with summer and school-year intervention plans. (And, shocker, they meet all six of the tips above!) Explore the different topics we can help you support.