Home learning: New Challenges, New Opportunities
Like many schools, Brighton Primary is starting to put plans in place for ‘home learning’. For most of us, this is a first! As educators, we will be learning as we go and are likely to make some mistakes along the way. We are looking at this as both a new challenge as well as a new opportunity. Whilst we will continue to be guided by the DET we are also thinking of ways to be proactive now so that we ensure learning for students continues in the event of a school closure.
What is home learning?
Globally, many schools have already been closed for extended periods of time. You may have heard this referred to as: home learning, digital learning, remote learning, distance learning or e-learning.
Regardless of the terminology, the essence of home learning is: The experience students will have when school remains in session however when students are unable to physically attend school because of campus closure. Our teachers are considering how we can deliver instruction that allows students to continue to learn.
What might be some of the guiding principles?
The internet is currently buzzing with many resources shared about home learning. One of the key messages from schools already in this scenario is to keep it simple. We want families and students to feel supported.
We are mindful that students in grade Prep are very different to students in grade 6. We will need to differentiate the learning based on the capabilities of the students and it will look different for different students and grade levels.
Initially, we expect to be sharing a suite of learning experiences in different curriculum areas. These will be completed at a time convenient to individual students and families. This is known as ‘Asynchronous’ learning.
What tools might we use to deliver the learning?
We currently have access to a range of digital tools to share information with parents and students. Our aim to continue with familiar platforms for both the parents and students. Some of these may include:
Snapshots via iNewsletter
Google Classroom for senior students
The DET has indicated they are developing a learning platform and resources that may also be available to support home learning.
How often will there be communication between school and home?
This will depend on the duration of the closure. It will also likely change and evolve as the situation develops.
What might be some challenges?
Nothing can replace face-to-face teaching and learning and the relationships teachers have with students within the classroom learning environment. Depending on the length of closure we will look to explore the possibilities around maintaining the social connections associated with learning.
Feedback is a key aspect of learning. The logistics around receiving learning engagements back from students will be a challenge. Initially, teachers may provide answer sheets where appropriate or checklists and ask parents to be involved in providing feedback. Students may also self-assess depending on the learning engagement.
Will all the learning be online or digital?
Learning tasks will be shared digitally. However, students may be asked to write in notebooks to balance screen time. Not all households have printers so if a worksheet is shared this may be viewed on the screen and completed on paper or in a workbook. There may also be a combination of digital and paper-based tasks, e.g. students watching a short video then answering some questions. Additionally, there may be some other tasks that involve students completing ‘hands-on’ activities, e.g. reading, writing, problem-solving, measuring, drawing, speaking, etc.
What will teachers be doing during the day?
Teachers will continue to be learning focussed. They will use this opportunity to work on our current school goal of strengthening reading. They will use digital tools to have online team meetings. Teachers will be analysing assessment data collected during Term 1 and continue to plan across a range of curriculum areas.
We trust that you can understand the complexity of this situation and we look forward to embracing the challenges and opportunities that a home learning scenario may present should the need arise.
This week, grade levels are re-launching their snapshots. These come in fortnightly cycles and will use the same program as the newsletter. You will receive a Compass feed with the link to each snapshot.
The links are also below for your easy reference:
Click on grade level to view fortnightly snapshot
|Grade Prep||Grade 1||Grade 2|
|Grade 3||Grade 4||Grade 5|
Steve, Joel and Sonya.