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Portland Community College teachers make YouTube videos to help struggling online students

Jessica Bernards and Wendy Fresh upload videos to a dedicated YoutTube channel with tips for students who are trying to adapt to online learning.

PORTLAND, Ore. — Portland Community College mathematics teachers Jessica Bernards and Wendy Fresh have teamed up to launch a YouTube channel to help students struggling to adapt to learning online. 

"We felt like it was really necessary to get some study skills out for students to learn how to be successful in a remote learning environment," said Bernards.

The YouTube channel is called "Anyone Can be a Math Person". The teachers have created short videos packed with useful tips. The tips can be as simple as "wear headphones." 

"It's amazing the difference that having headphones in, especially if you're surrounded by a lot of outside noise, can really make with keeping you focused," explained Bernards.

"Another big thing we talk about in several of the videos is the idea of setting a schedule for yourself," said Fresh. "Map out your week. Learning math, learning any subject, takes time." 

The pair have created several videos over the last few months fit for 7th to 8th graders through college students.  

They initially focused on math on their channel, but with so many kids working solo at home, the teachers realized they needed to expand topics. They've even even covered remote-learning "cheating" and how to avoid it. "If you're in a remote class and you're taking an exam or you're taking a quiz, you should not be using Google to search for answers," said Fresh. "A lot of students don't realize that searching on Google is considered cheating."

The YouTube channel offers remote teaching tips for teachers, too.

Bernards and Fresh have also started making different versions of their videos. Some are geared to online learning, while others are for in-person when students go back to school. 

They believe there will be an ongoing need for their videos. "This whole situation has taught all of us that there will be a certain amount of remote learning, distance learning that's going to continue moving forward," Fresh said.

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