Coronavirus News: Teachers turn to tech to help with remote learning during COVID-19 pandemic

NEW YORK (WABC) -- Tuesday is National Teacher Day, part of Teacher Appreciation Week, a time to highlight teachers going above and beyond.

And such efforts are especially important in this time of remote learning during the coronavirus pandemic.

Whether it's getting into character or getting right into a Hollywood moment, teachers are using tech to adjust to their new reality.

Jacob Stebel teaches film at a high school in the South Bronx, and so having his own green screen at home -- which cost him about $30 -- along with some free Adobe software is helping him to teach his students about movies by injecting himself INTO them.

"I figured, I love these films," he said. "Why not put myself in them and pause them and comment on them?"

For Jamie Ewing, who teaches younger kids science in the South Bronx, it's about using a more interactive graphics program called Prezi Video, which he says is way more exciting than screen sharing.

"I can have images up on the screen, I can pull them full screen," he said. "Or I can have them little, they're flying around."

And of course, teachers like Lauren Zubovic, Searingtown Elementary, who've never used TikTok before are loving the feedback from their students.

"I didn't really expect her to be so cool," one student said.

Even the AP bio students in Levittown are sharing all they've learned about DNA after their teacher Grace Wheeler challenged them on TikTok.

"So I was like, let's talk to them in their own language," she said. "And they took this assignment, and all of them were incredible."

The best teachers realize that oftentimes, the biggest challenges can also lead to the greatest success.

Here are some tips for those teachers seeking out innovative approaches:

How to set up a green screen on a low budget


Chroma Keying effectively in Adobe Premiere Pro


Even if you just have an iPhone or iPad, the free version of iMovie on those devices has easy to follow green screen functionality.

Helpful links on Prezi.com:
Prezi Video
Getting started with Prezi

Prezi Video tutorial


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