Although this is different from the situation you touch upon, both situations capture the challenge of communication in an online world. I find this a little easier when I have had the chance to meet the people who I maybe supporting in person. However, this is not always possible when schools are so geographically disparate.
During the First World War, soldiers at the front used pigeons to communicate with those behind the lines, and with tank commanders when their radios failed. In the Second World War most bomber crews carried a pair of birds in a specially designed floating cage. If they were shot down they would release a pigeon bearing a message detailing their position.
Being overwhelmed is no excuse. It’s hard to be good at your job if you’re bad at responding to people.
Remember that a short reply is kinder and more professional than none at all. If you have too much on your plate, come clean: “I don’t have the bandwidth to add this.” If it’s not your expertise, just say so: “Sorry, this isn’t in my wheelhouse.” And if you want to say no, just say “no.”
The one caveat, emails from strangers continually asking for something. These can be ignored.
I have a few general rules. You should not feel obliged to respond to strangers asking you to share their content on social media, introduce them to your more famous colleagues, spend hours advising them on something they’ve created or “jump on a call this afternoon.” If someone you barely know emails you a dozen times a month and is always asking you to do something for him, you can ignore those emails guilt-free.
Personally, I think that it is a balance between where parents are and where you want them to be. I think a lot of people baulk at something like Edublogs because it is another space to log into, however I have significant concerns about sending people to places like Facebook and other such sites because of the issues with algorithms and advertising.
What annoys me most though about most forms of notifications is that they often send out a link to the information with just enough detail to get you to click, but not enough to be content.
Critical to the success of our experience with personal inquiry is the role of the teacher in conferring with learners. Far from being a routine that allows learners to simply “go off on their own” , teachers are working the room as coaches, guides, observers and co-researchers. Scheduled and spontaneous conferences are the mainstay of the teachers’ role during iTime.
Remember: the lack of communication does not just mean a failure to speak; it is also a failure to listen, to not give our attention to (and to distract others’ attention from) the things that we really must.
They both allow us to stay in touch, but while email often attracts ire, text messaging is more popular than ever. Is the way we choose to communicate saying more than we might think?