While private schools could immediately manage to operate their classes online during the lockdown, it was the rural sector or schools with limited aid that took longer to adjust to the new norm, considering the lack of gadgets and internet services in their regions.
There’s no doubt that technology is helping students stay at par in their studies in the middle of a pandemic. After many expert discussions, some supporting and others against the screen time, we’ve finally come to the conclusion that in order to keep acquiring skills and back up our economy, we need highly technological knowledge-based pedagogy. For now, we can't wait but use technology as a brilliant substitute for physical classrooms.
However, there are a few aspects that need to be taken care of while implementing technology in everyday teaching methods:
Get the Basics: One must know how to access easy apps like Zoom, Google Hangout, etc. that are proving to be extremely handy in taking everyday classes. From installing them to conducting a conference or classroom, their simple features are considerably easy to grasp. It’s okay if you’re not tech-savvy but the enthusiasm to learn is important in this case.
Teacher’s Training: Don’t hesitate to welcome your staff for training or ask for help if you’re a teacher and don’t understand the know-how of the tech-world. Don't all educators believe that there's no age limit for learning new things?
Get Compatible Technology: To begin with, get apps that are user-friendly, something that you can access on both your phone and computer screen. Also, initially, lookup for those that are freely available to both you and your students.
Integrating Technologies or Curriculum Integration: It means infusing the technological tools to enhance learning. Effective integration of technology is when students are able to study, complete assignments, attend classes using apps and the internet. For teachers, integration helps manage database, make planners & programs and speed up assessing and grading. In fact, it becomes comfortable to share this information in real-time across all the systems of the campus even from the comfort of our homes, which is the case at the moment.
Staying Updated on Emerging Technology: Since the COVID-outbreak, many new technologies and apps have been innovated that claim to make e-education easier and more efficient. Of course, it can be hard to simultaneously stay aware of all the new tools and apps, hence, it's suggested to keep an eye on the reviews (via blogs or podcasts) before investing in any.
Explore Virtual Reality (VR): Virtual Reality is a simulated experience and can be used for both entertainment and educational purposes. From interacting with a person in a seemingly real or physical way using special electronic equipment, such as a helmet with a screen inside or gloves fitted with sensors, or touring museums, underwater life, lands in any part of the world, everything becomes a reality with VR.
Focus on Individual Learning: It may occur that a few students take extra time to grab the online lessons. For them, go back to the 'pen and paper' method and simply record a video solving the problem or explaining the diagram. Then use something as easy as WhatsApp to share these video-messages with them. It’s okay to give that computer screen a break sometimes.
Making technology a part of our life is not unmanageable or incompetent, it's just a new phase that we need to embrace and get comfortable with. We hope you agree with us.
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