When we moved to remote learning, I was fortunate enough to be working in a handful of classrooms. I got to teach my genre fiction unit with 6th graders and a brand new narrative non-fiction unit with 7th graders. What I learned, alongside my brave and wonderful co-teachers, is that relationships and the option for complex thinking instead of busywork, created decent conditions for engagement. And despite the obvious constraints and challenges, a bright side of remote teaching was the opportunity to provide much more feedback, especially ongoing feedback on writing, via Google docs. In fact, I was awed by the caliber of writing produced by students all the way through the end of May. Some of that caliber came from serious and multiple revisions. Not lying!
Many educators have been posting about what we want to keep in place once students and teachers return full time to brick and mortar classrooms. I want to continue to minimize rote repetitive work and emphasize writing to think, writing to learn, and writing for fun.