The Sick Teacher's Tech Toolkit

As winter gets into full swing, teachers know that it’s also time for another season to start hitting hard: the flu. We know our students are sick, coughing, blowing noses, or calling in absent, and inevitably, we’ll be sick right along with them.

You’ll hear a lot of lines about being a teacher and being sick:

“My kids need me there.”
“I can’t miss--I don’t have sub plans ready.”

Or my personal favorite…

“It’s harder for me to miss a day than it is for me to be at school sick.”

However, there are definitely going to be days where you can’t--or rather, shouldn’t--be at school. This blog post isn’t here to dictate when those times are--I trust that you can figure out that projectile vomiting can be a classroom disruption. Rather, what tools exist to make your day off easier for your students and for yourself?

Check out the resources below--you’ll notice they are separated into categories.

Collecting Student Work or Papers
If you’re looking to collect student work from the previous class, have students:
  • Upload or share digital work to Google Drive, Dropbox, or through Google Forms
  • If you want to get really out there, have students send a pic of it to you on Twitter with a classroom hashtag.
  • “Call in” their work to a Google Voice account -- a really good idea for language arts & English teachers.
  • Post a FlipGrid of their work explaining their answers.

Distributing Lesson Plans & Materials

Easily share the day’s work with students via an LMS (Learning Management System), or one your make on your own:
  • Create a Hyperdoc or Hyperslide (see this link for a general guide)
  • Share it with students by giving your substitute a short URL to write on the board, such as one from
  • Once you’ve gotten a hyperslide or doc made, don’t forget to include everything in it that students will need (warmups to exit-tickets, etc).

    Warmups / Exit Tickets

    Creating quick and efficient warmup and exit tickets is a must, especially when you’re not feeling well. I personally recommend one of the following apps because they only need URL’s to get to them:

      Replacing “You”

      Let’s be real-- there is no such thing as replacing you, a teacher, in a classroom. However, there are a few ways to create the next best thing:
      • Create lesson tutorials using Iorad that interactively walk your students through your lesson step-by-step. You can see a blog post that I did on this app here.
      • Create video tutorials using Screencastify and upload them to Google Drive or even YouTube.