I read a joke somewhere that said this pandemic has made something possible in many organizations that the CTOs or the CEOs were not able to bring in effectively - The digitization of operations.
This, beyond being delightful tongue-in-cheek humour has been true on some levels and we can see it happening already. As a Design Teacher for Middle School students, I had been witnessing the brilliance, technology can implant in Teaching and Learning. Learners use technology to unleash their creativity and create innovative presentations to showcase their work every day across disciplines. IB has always emphasized the role of technology in 6 major ways - Investigating, Creating, Communicating, Collaborating, Organizing and Becoming responsible digital citizens.
Now that we have moved on to Virtual Classes, as educators, we too reflect on these aspects, our tech usage practices and policies, as we encounter new challenges.
As an ardent lover of technology, understanding that we live in a VUCA world, this Virtual Learning experience has been a pleasure for me in planning my day-to-day lessons. Any form of learning becomes easy when we understand and prioritize the process. I did the same with my teaching methodology which involved the following steps,
- All the class tasks were posted in the form of Assignments on a learning platform called Edmodo with step-by-step instructions
- Every lesson had a video tutorial explaining how the learners can go about completing their work (here’s the link to my YT Channel)
- A feedback link was shared with the learners for recording their reflections on the task at the end of the class.
This structure helped learners quickly start their tasks during the class and use the time mostly to interact with the teacher to get their doubts clarified and to share their ideas. The most beautiful aspect of virtual learning was the active participation of learners and their regularity in turning in their assignments, thanks to the multitude of tech tools and of course, the enthusiasm of my learners.
As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words. Here are some snapshots that show you the excellent work done by students in their online assignments. You can view more such amazing work on my Design blog.
How an online Design Assignment looks on Edmodo (A digital classroom management tool connecting Students, Teachers and Parents)
Learning through Games
Thanks to the rich learning environment provided by digital platforms, resource sharing, extended and collaborative learning have become easier than we imagined. Educators and Learners are now able to overcome time constraints and inaccessibility. My learners have resorted to experimentation with new multimedia tools in order to exhibit their works. They have created Podcasts, Video Tutorials, Coding challenges, Robotic/Automation projects, reports etc. and have shared their work with their peers to communicate and collaborate while learning. The beauty of such Tech-integrated learning is the ease of organization and resource management tools that it provides. We use classroom management platforms like Edmodo, Google Meet and Class Dojo to be in touch with our students to clarify their doubts and to give them feedback after evaluating their assignments.