Seven months have passed since the school closed down due to the Covid 19 pandemic and it seems like eternity. I miss the laughter and face to face interaction with students in a physical school.
The transition from the physical classroom to online classes was extremely challenging but we took things in our stride and adapted to online classes efficiently. Students were able to continue their education via online educational platforms such as Google Classroom and Zoom.
Google Classroom is a streamlined tool is used to manage course material, upload videos, worksheets for students to complete and return, and enables us teachers to grade and send feedback to students. Teachers would video record their lectures and upload it in Google classroom, assignments were also created on Google forms and Google docs which were then uploaded in Google Classroom, thus providing an opportunity for students to review the material well in advance. During online classes they would discuss and clarify their doubts related to the topic. Various online tools such as Edpuzzle, Kahoot, Pear deck, Padlet and Break out rooms a feature of Zoom were used to make the sessions interactive and enriching.
Edpuzzle is used to make a video interactive. The students have the autonomy to respond to questions or quizzes and review comments left by the teacher.
Kahoot can be used to create a game or quiz on any topic in minutes and makes learning fun for children.
Padlet is highly useful just like a board, students can share their ideas by placing it on the Padlet. These ideas are then discussed with the entire class.
Breakout rooms are feature of Zoom. It is a great way for students to interact and participate online. The students are divided into smaller groups and assigned to separate rooms. An activity related to the topic can be given. After completion of the task the rooms are closed and students return to the main session to discuss what they have learnt. Through breakout rooms students not only learn to assimilate information but also share it with their classmates.
At TABIS, we have always arranged guest lecturers to speak to our students on specific topics. Guest lectures are appealing as it goes beyond classroom teaching and there is tremendous scope for tapping into the creative pursuits of students leading to acquisition of life skills. Usually these lectures would be face to face. This year too, undeterred by the lockdown, renowned guest lecturers with expertise in their respective field were invited to conduct sessions via Zoom. Students benefitted immensely as they gained knowledge from their real life experiences.
Parents play a vital role in the education of their children and our parents at TABIS have supported the school in the Online Learning phase. For smooth functioning of online classes, parents need to ensure that the room is free of distractions, the child has the required materials needed for the class, attends class on time and completes all assignments.
A paradigm shift has occurred with online teaching gaining prominence and teachers have put in tremendous effort to motivate students and make classes lively using various online platforms. Valuable lessons can be learnt from the existing situation. One can explore, learn and implement innovative techniques to impart education and make remote learning a joyful experience for students.
Author: Ms. Precy Coelho
Teaching Faculty – Senior School, The Aditya Birla Integrated School