Schools will reopen to new ways of learning, post the COVID -19. Online learning is a welcome change for some, but for most, school time and a regular routine implies safer times. There are unpredictable changes and the way each of us respond is giving insights into our progress as a civilization. This means changes to our learning styles as well.
Real life problems require holistic approach,a.k.a an all encompassing one. Apart from scientific temperament, problem solving, analytical skill, every skill that can positively influence the society should be exercised.
This reinforces the trite “We are all in this together” .It is obvious that a pathogen that is invisible to the human eye can cause havoc.
Stories of compassion,perseverance,courage and compassion are on the rise amidst all the negative narrative.These are the values that make us human(e) and these are what we can nurture from a very young age.
So what can be the changes,or tweaks that can happen in our learning spaces,based on the lessons that COVID-19 offered us?
Lesson: COVID – 19 changed the way we eat,we cook using what is available in our homes,without being picky.
Learning Tweak : Hands on projects that are time bound,resource bound.Cooking can be introduced in classrooms – cooking a nutritious meal with the given resources,within a stipulated time is a science and art!
This important skill should be satisfying not stressful.Home cooked food is what everyone should look forward to,not packaged foods.
Lesson :Building immunity and spending time outdoors helps. Connecting children to Nature cannot be over emphasized.Scientific studies prove that Vitamin N is a necessary component for every one.
Learning Tweak: More outdoor sessions,nature related activities will make students more observant and appreciative of Nature.Projects that encourage solutions towards a sustainable life style should be mandatory for all students,across schools and colleges.
Lesson :Setting time for online and offline learning.When students are confined indoors,not everything is learnt online.
Learning Tweak : Managing to do all their chores and chipping in with the other household chores keeps them active and alert.This can also be an assignment.Need examples?
Projects : Science behind washing clothes,Cleaning using all-natural solutions,Managing household wastes
When there are changes in the learning,can testing continue to be in the same format?A format that encourages competition,success and progress that is not multi dimensional and at a cost – a cost that no one can afford to bear anymore?
Can assessments be fun and challenging at the same time?More importantly,can progress be something more relevant and significant than marks/grades?
If assessments need modifications,teachers need adequate training – training that is interesting,thought provoking,connected to earth-sensitive living and learning – Journal Jotting
It will be interesting if educators come together with an assessment framework that brings out the best in every child.Times are changing,are we equipped enough ?