The challenges of virtual, distance learning are well known to us all by now. Who would have thought that this new year’s changing circumstances would mean a return to online lessons? As ever, we need to remain both flexible and resilient in light of the fluid educational landscape in which we find ourselves, and it might be a good time to reflect on some good practices surrounding virtual learning.
Most of our students are adept at learning online having experienced different models over the past 2 years or so. Everyone is different, of course, and some students are better at coping with the change than others. Our aim is to ensure that nobody is left behind and that a variety of learning experiences is offered which do not over-rely on staring at a screen for 5 hours, or more, every day. One positive to take away from virtual education is the new skills and competencies our students develop which will help them greatly in the future.
During the pandemic, much work has been done across the globe to further the education of our young people in a very different model to which had previously been ‘the norm’ and the tips below are a synthesis of advice and guidance from many professional groups and organisations, including our own staff’s experiences. Here are our 4 Top Tips:
Be prepared for school as ‘normal’, albeit at home
Get up, get dressed and get ready for learning! Go to bed at your usual time and come to virtual school well-rested and well-nourished.
Find a quiet, good place to learn
You can only concentrate when free from distractions. Make sure that your social media apps and telephone are switched off and that you can concentrate 100% on your lessons.
One of the many positives about being in school is the social aspect of learning. Make sure that you stay in contact with friends outside of lessons and that if you encounter any difficulties, that you let someone know!
Sitting in one place for hours on end is not good. Equally, spending your downtime (breaks and mealtimes) in front of a screen can be detrimental to both your physical and mental health. Get up and move about. Take a walk, do some physical exercise. We’re not in lockdown, you’re just not at school!
Most important of all is to stay positive! This home-learning will end and in no time you will be back in school with your friends- perhaps in class bubbles, but with your peers nevertheless.
We all look forward to having the school open again, full of students and the ‘buzz’ you help create.