Updated: April 20
As we continue to publish new student-centered resources related to this pandemic every weekday, you can find all our coronavirus content all in one place, in this column.
For example, we are posting regular writing prompts for teenagers about every aspect of life right now, from managing social distancing and online school to staying fit and finding comfort. Here are some of our latest favorite comments, under the headline, “What Students Are Saying About Remote Learning.“
As Covid-19 closes more and more schools, and affects more and more lives, we’ve put together a page that we will continue to update to help teachers and students find resources to do any or all of the following:
The Learning Network will, as always, continue to publish our own new features for students every weekday, all of which are free, and many of which are interactive.
Here is a post that walks you through how to use our site. We invite you to join us to:
Please post a comment to let us know how else we might help, especially if yours is one of the schools that has been closed.
Stay updated on the outbreak.
During a public health emergency, staying informed is more important than ever. All New York Times reporting on the coronavirus is free and can be found in one place, at nytimes.com/news-event/coronavirus. This page includes the Live Updates post, which features several new stories a day, and is the longest-running 24-hour news briefing The Times has done.
On the page, you can also find links to:
Other reliable sources of continuously updated information include:
Learning Idea: A glance at the front page of The Times or any other paper right now will show you that this global pandemic is impacting everything from the world economy to our social rituals. It is raising questions about how we work and how we play; what responsibilities governments have to prepare for pandemics and keep their citizens informed; how we care for our most vulnerable; how the outbreak fuels racism and xenophobia; and what role schools play in our societies.
That’s a lot to get your head around, so students might start with a version of the classic K/W/L chart: What do you know, or think you know, about this pandemic and its impact? What else do you want to know? Make a list of as many questions as you can on as many aspects of this outbreak and its effects and implications as you can think of, then choose one to investigate. What is known? What is still unknown? Use some of the resources above, or other reliable sources listed throughout this post, to find and share what you learn with others, either in a classroom setting or, if you’re working from home, virtually.
Think critically about information.
Can spraying alcohol all over your body kill the coronavirus?
Is there a “miracle mineral solution” that can treat it?
Did Corona beer sales drop sharply because of fears about the coronavirus?
The answer to all three of these questions is no, but as the coronavirus has spread across the world, so too has misinformation. In fact, according to a Times article, “Surge of Virus Misinformation Stumps Facebook and Twitter,” there is so much inaccurate information about the virus, the W.H.O. says it is confronting an “infodemic.”
Here are some resources for staying on top of what’s true and what’s not — and for learning key news literacy skills useful not just in this context, but for thinking critically about any information you encounter.
The Infodemic Blog: This site teaches a four-step process to use with coronavirus-related information that will show you “the skills that will make a dramatic difference in your ability to sort fact from fiction on the web (and everything in between).”
As part of its Covid-19 advice for the public, the W.H.O. has a “Myth busters” page.
The News Literacy Project also has a “Rumor Review” that helps students look critically at how coronavirus hoaxes continue to spread.
On The Learning Network, we embed news literacy in everything we do. Here are just a few of the coronavirus resources we’ve published since March — but you can find them all here:
Learning Idea: Choose a coronavirus-related claim you find on social media and use the techniques suggested by the Infodemic Blog to investigate. What did you discover? How well did it work to apply the suggested process to this particular claim?
Consider essential questions about the pandemic and what it tells us about our world today.
Beyond following the news and understanding the facts about this pandemic, thinking about this pandemic through the lens of “essential questions” might offer ways to make connections as you navigate an onslaught of information.
Here are a few questions that occur to us, and we welcome more from readers:
What weaknesses — and what strengths — is coronavirus exposing in our society? (Update: We have now posed this as a Student Opinion question, so please post a comment!)
What lessons can we learn from this crisis? How should we apply those lessons?
What role should leaders, in government and elsewhere, play during a crisis like this one?
What ethical issues does this pandemic raise — for each of us personally, for our immediate communities and for us all as global citizens? What does it mean to be a “good citizen” in the context of this outbreak?
What are the causes and effects of this pandemic? What future effects can you predict, whether they happen in days, weeks, months or years? Why?
How will this crisis change us?
How can you best help yourself, your friends and family, or any other communities you are a part of that are affected by the pandemic?
Learning Idea: Which of these questions interests you most? Choose one of them, or another big question of your own, then read the news through that lens, finding articles, videos, social media posts, photographs, maps, graphs or anything else that might address it. What answers do those sources suggest? What additional questions or issues do they raise? What conclusions, if any, can you draw?
Teach and learn when schools are closed.
Updated: April 15:
The Times is reporting from New York City and around the world about what’s happening as millions move teaching and learning online. Here is a selection of recent pieces about it:
Here on The Learning Network, we have been hearing from students all over the world on this topic for several weeks now. Here is our round-ups of what they have had to say about adjusting to learning and socializing remotely, spending more time with family, and sacrificing comfort and convenience for the greater good.: What Students Are Saying About Living Through a Pandemic and What Students Are Saying About Remote Learning .
Here are some resources from around the web that may help both teachers and students navigate the uncertainty. We welcome suggestions for additions to any of these lists.
Advice for Teaching and Learning Online: