The pandemic has turned the world upside down. With many businesses shutting down, countries going into lockdown, and face-to-face interactions restricted to a minimum, everyone around the world is forced to face this “new normal.” Schools all across the world have been closing down since the start of the year for fear of the virus spreading further, turning instead to online education to keep their students safe.
Advantages of Online Learning During COVID-19
1. Brings a sense of normalcy
With everything changing around the world, new safety rules and precautions, physical distancing, and whatnot, having to go back to school via online learning gives students some semblance of normalcy. For growing children, a routine is essential to their mental and emotional health because it provides them with stability and security.
2. Instantly accessible
Online education reduces the hazard of having to head outside to procure physical textbooks or to even sign up for enrollment. With online education, students can instantly enroll online for their classes, attend classes virtually, and can download all the learning materials they need with a click of a button.
3. More affordable
Many parents may think that online learning is more expensive than on-campus learning but this is actually not true. Online education is actually proven to be cheaper than a traditional set-up because schools don’t charge for miscellaneous fees, lab fees, and such. Parents will also no longer need to pay for uniforms (if the school requires is), physical textbooks, or money for the morning and afternoon commute (or pay for gas to get there). All students will need is a working computer or laptop and stable internet connection and they’re all set for the year.
4. Student-teacher interaction
Online learning makes it easier for students to get feedback from their instructors. In a normal classroom setting, students have to fight for their teacher’s attention while in an online learning set-up, all they have to do is send their teacher an email and they can either have a personal consultation set-up or have a correspondence via email. With a personal correspondence done via email, teachers can spend as much time as they need to thoroughly explain concepts and ideas to their students.
5. Its safer
Lastly, online education is clearly safer than on-campus learning. Students (and parents) will no longer have to worry about venturing out of their homes just to continue their education. They can do so from the safety of their own homes. No more unnecessary exposure to other people while commuting or even during in class. Everything from classes to quizzes and even exams can be safely conducted through their devices.
How Students and Teachers are Adjusting to Online Education During a Pandemic
Online learning during COVID-19 has not been easy for everybody. Nobody could have predicted this pandemic, and as such, many schools were blindsided and were forced to quickly shift to create distance learning solutions in the time of COVID-19. Problems such as internet speed, connection issues, and even online video conference room hackers have plagued many teachers. This has made the first few transition months of online learning especially difficult for both teachers and students alike. But as with any new situation, the first months are always the hardest. Here are how teachers and students are adjusting to the new normal.
Teachers have always known about the importance about adaptability in their careers. This includes changing the pace of their teaching to better engage students, learning how to manage their classrooms, and even adapting to the times so they can better relate to their students. These days, the skill of adaptability comes into play when disruptions happen such as connection trouble or when students get distracted when they are online. Unlike in a regular classroom set-up, keeping students engaged online is much harder when you cannot see them face-to-face, so teacher must be quick on their feet and think of innovative ways to keep their students’ attention.
Setting Realistic Goals
The biggest and most important change that has come this pandemic is that teachers are quickly learning to set realistic goals for how much lessons they can cover in a day. Online learning is vastly different from traditional learning, especially if both the teacher and the students are not used to the set-up. Teachers understand that there are many factors at home that can distract students, such as slow internet connection, siblings, even pets, that can make it difficult for students to stay attentive. So teachers have to frequently adjust their lessons plans, and that’s alright.
Keeping Engagement Up
One of the biggest challenges educators are facing when it comes to online learning, or even traditional learning, for that matter, is keeping students engaged. Teachers need to hold their students’ attention and keep them away from any distractions. To keep them engaged, many schools are cutting lectures into short sequences to make online learning more manageable. Teachers have also been more animated and livelier during classroom discussion to keep students entertained.
It takes a village to raise a child. Now more than ever, this saying holds true. Because teachers do not have direct access to their students, they are relying more than ever on parents’ active participation in the student’s remote learning. Teachers are establishing open lines of communication with parents to help keep students on track with their studies. Teachers and parents need to form a strong partnership and work as a team to ensure the educational success of the students.
Many schools have found the shift from traditional learning to online learning a difficult one but luckily for OEd, we have long mastered the art of online learning. As one of the pioneers of online education in the Philippines, our educators know how best to teach each student so that they reach their full potential.
COVID-19 has shaken the world and changed the way we do things, maybe forever. If there’s one thing we’ve realized, it’s the utter importance of education, and that no matter where we are, learning can take place. Given today’s technological advancements, online education is easier than ever and can perhaps be the new normal, even beyond the end of this pandemic.
Check Online Education (OEd) programs that will perfectly match your needs. We have online senior high programs, online undergraduate degree courses, graduate courses, and short courses online.