Heather Turner

Educator relies on Checkology in class and for teaching remotely


N.Y. teacher librarian Heather Turner

A few years ago Heather Turner, a teacher librarian in the Fabius-Pompey Central School District in central New York, saw social media posts from other librarians about Checkology® virtual classroom, and she was intrigued.

“I was looking for something to augment what I was already doing with digital citizenship,” says Turner, who has been an educator for a dozen years.

She then began using Checkology, NLP’s e-learning platform, in her classroom. “I teach media literacy in all of its facets so that my students are citizens who can discern the bias and information behind and about media,” she says.

Teaching remotely

And when the COVID-19 pandemic forced the closure of schools in Turner’s district earlier this year, she relied on Checkology as she transitioned to distance learning.

Perhaps surprisingly, she found similarities in online and classroom teaching. “I find that sometimes the students need a little bit of direct instruction as well as the videos and questions,” a major component of Checkology. She also supplemented Checkology’s 13 lessons with hyperdocs, which include comprehensive resource links, so the students can demonstrate their learning.

Two months into the COVID-19 education disruption, Turner has found that her students are adapting to the changes needed with distance learning. “They are doing much better now than when it first started,” she says.

But there are still challenges  for students, educators and families, she notes. “I think we have to think of this as emergency school, not distance learning. This is not something students or staff signed up for and the stress has been hard for everyone.”

As COVID-19 continues to impact our lives, Turner said she is working to help students see the connections between the pandemic and the related “infodemic” of an overwhelming amount of information, much of it false and misleading.

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