15 New Problems That Remote Teachers Are Facing Right Now

15 New Problems That Remote Teachers Are Facing Right Now

Welcome to a New World Order teachers! Most of us have now started remote teaching our students and have uncovered a big ol’ Pandora’s box of issues that even we couldn’t have seen coming. Who knows how long we’ll be doing this, but as we navigate these extremely uncharted waters here are just a few problems teachers are having, that maybe you can relate to.

1. The endless barrage of questions

It’s weird how kids are so much better at technology than we are, and yet the minute we start using it, we get bombarded with questions on how to use it. We hoped the questions we’d get from students would be somehow related to the subject we’re teaching. Instead, every morning we have to answer questions like “How do you open this assignment?” and “Where do I turn it in?

2. Snacks, snacks and more snacks

One of the biggest complaints teachers have during the school year is that we rarely get enough time to sit and eat a proper lunch or have time for a snack break. Well congratulations teachers, because we no longer have that problem. We now have so much time for lunch that some of us are scheduling 3-4 lunches per day! Plus snacks!

3. Zoom bombing

You’re not going to believe this, but the class clowns you have to deal with in school are finding super creative ways to be virtual class clowns now. Whether it’s dropping naughty words in the group chat, screaming something inappropriate in your Zoom meeting, or… even worse… DOING something inappropriate in your Zoom meeting, kids have some very creative ways of getting classmates off track.

4. Way too many resources

Many teachers already have several online resources that they use throughout the year to help facilitate learning. But boy howdy once we switched to remote learning, schools everywhere wanted to make sure we had EVERY resource under the sun. Teachers have been buried under a pile of emails filled with links to resources we’ve never seen before. Now, all we have to do is figure out how to use them AND find a way to teach our students how to use them. Goody.

5. Running out of wine

After answering 150 emails, sitting through 5 Zoom meetings and tracking down all the students you haven’t heard from yet… some of us like to treat ourselves to a nice glass of vino. However, all around the world, people are cranking through their wine supply like never before leaving us with this difficult dilemma: Do we risk going outside or risk not having wine in the house?

6. More meetings than ever

I’m not sure how this is possible, but it feels as though Administration is making up for the lack of face-to-face time by unleashing a ridiculous amount of meetings on us. It’s good to know that most of these meetings still have that air of familiarity about them. We still have the teacher that brags about how awesome their lessons are, the teacher that asks too many questions and the teacher that has no idea what’s going on. At least now you can mute your microphone and say how you really feel!

7. People seeing your messy house

I’m honestly running out of rooms in my house to sit in during these zoom meetings. Remember when we all thought this quarantine would give us more time to finally clean our homes? Turns out “free time” wasn’t the problem! Now I have to become Quentin Tarantino to find a camera angle that somehow makes my house look halfway decent.

8. What day is it?

Teachers thrive on schedules and routines. We plan and assign with our calendars handy at all times. Unfortunately, March just felt like one big Saturday and April isn’t faring much better. It’s kinda hard to give due dates when you don’t know what the date is!

9. Technology (still) sucks

Teachers have been battling technology issues ever since the Apple IIe rolled into classrooms in the 1980’s. Now that we’ve moved to using nothing but technology we’ve unleashed a fantastical new array of technological disasters. From websites crashing to slow internet connections to files that don’t want to open it’s like navigating a minefield of issues we need to deal with.

10. Missing our teacher buddies

Your teacher buddy is always there for you. No matter who or what is driving you crazy, you can always vent to them and feel better. And sure, your teacher buddy is still out there somewhere and you can still text and call and Facetime… but it’s just not quite the same. We’re all finding out that sarcasm doesn’t always translate through the interwebs.

11. Teaching while parenting

If you’re a teacher that’s also a parent… congratulations your job just became 10 times harder. As challenging as it is to deal with your students, now you have the added bonus of your biological children begging for help and attention. Thankfully teachers are super awesome at multi-tasking, but that doesn’t make it any less frustrating. 

12. A brand new slew of excuses

Just a couple weeks into remote learning and we’re all longing for the days of excuses like “my dog ate my homework”. Online learning has led to online excuses, and since we’re not meeting our students face to face it’s getting harder and harder to determine if they’re legitimate or how we can try to fix them. 

Of course, there will always be that one student that will log into your online classroom to tell you that they can’t log into your online classroom… some things will never change. 

13. Into the Unknown

Teachers are really good at adapting to just about every conceivable circumstance under the sun, but usually, those circumstances come with end dates. Not only have we made the switch to remote teaching on the fly, we have no idea how long this virtual teaching is going to last. Another week? Another month? Until the end of the school year? Not knowing when it’s going to end makes things even more confusing.

14. Dealing with surprising parent interactions

Yes, a new way of teaching has brought us a whole new world of parent interactions. For some parents, this last month has been a wake-up call. Suddenly, people around the world are realizing that this whole teaching thing is actually pretty hard. While some parents have realized a newfound appreciation for teachers, others are praying every day for schools to open back up ASAP.

15. Missing our kids

Of course, at the end of the day, the biggest problem teachers are facing is that we’re missing our kids. Because no matter how much we complain and gripe about them from time to time, they’re always “our kids”. We can’t see them all, we can’t hug them and we’re missing out on all those daily interactions that make teaching worth it. Out of all the problems teachers are facing these days I can assure you this one is the one that hurts the most.

Also Read:

15 New Problems That Remote Teachers Are Facing Right Now

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David Rode

Dave is a middle school math teacher. He's also a musician, a community theater, dad to two amazing children, and he doesn't get a lot of sleep.

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