How COVID-19 Has Changed The Way Teachers Work
The content delivery and engagement models are indispensable parts of new-age learning systems and define how students learn and grow today.
COVID-19 has severely affected humankind and the global economy, causing significant disruption in every sector across the globe. Education is no different. The teaching-learning process has undergone a dramatic transformation, where not only the tools but the environment in which the tools are used has changed. However, as the education fraternity has retreated to the digital dimension of being, teachers have been forced to face the most jarring change in how they operate and deliver learning outcomes.
Technology for teaching
Technology has been at the forefront of how education is being delivered for more than a year now. Though online learning existed even before the pandemic, it was only a store of books or learning aid and the majority of the teaching-learning process took part in physical classrooms. However, educators have realised how engaging, accessible, and enriching an online classroom can be. Of course, online learning works only when there is a skilled operator and an interested group engaged in the online classroom.
Educators across the globe are curating content - quick short videos to full-blown documentaries, to deliver lessons. While teachers explore and develop new resources, they also use collaboration methods as a tool for students to experiment with peer-to-peer learning. The content delivery and engagement models are indispensable parts of new-age learning systems and define how students learn and grow today.
To support teachers in navigating through the online space, edtech companies are actively engaged in creating digital spaces where teachers can be supported with technology-driven pedagogy and learning material, along with tips on the use of digital platforms and tools.
To be efficient in the entire scenario, teachers require a thorough understanding & application of pedagogy in an online environment. Unlike classical pedagogy, where teachers and subject matter experts derive a content-context cluster to craft the teaching-learning process, e-learning combines learning psychology, content delivery, and assessments to measure individual learner’s journey and progress. Inertia and 'fiefdom' attitudes of traditional educators had always restricted the education system’s digital transformation, but the current crisis has forced them to go digital.
An opportunity for up-skilling
Teachers in this extreme environment have continued to teach, encourage, and inspire and be highly adaptive to changes in the classroom environment. A large chunk of the teaching fraternity has leveraged the situation as an opportunity to become more technology savvy. Though online classes reduced their face to face interactions with students, it made them more approachable for students and opened up more student engagement opportunities.
Learning is an ongoing process that involves unlearning old methods to make space for newer, more effective methods, and today's teachers realise it well. Considering the different dynamics of an offline classroom and an online classroom, teachers are upskilling to keep the students engaged in an online classroom.
Redefining student engagement
In an offline classroom, a student might be present physically but not mentally, lost in his/her train of thoughts. The only way for a teacher to keep a check on that would be to keep asking questions. However, Online classes have redefined engagement. Digital Platforms can track individual and group performance, record it as data and present it in beautiful and clear charts.
Though the sudden switch to e-learning with little experience has been challenging for teachers and faced some friction at first, teachers have acknowledged the advantages of incorporating online teaching or digital tools in lectures. Educators, students and parents are now well aware of the possibilities and effectiveness of digital learning.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house
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