What makes a ‘quality’ remote learning platform for schools?

By Vicky Hart - 2 Jul, 2020
Education

If you are researching solutions to enable ‘quality remote learning’ then read on…

We have over 15 years’ experience of providing EdTech solutions to help support teaching in schools across the globe – so we know what works and what optimises learning both in and out of the classroom.

This article discusses the six most important aspects of using a learning platform for teaching remotely.

1. Delivery of lessons

The ability to host/embed videos and links for online lessons is paramount. Children like to engage with teacher led learning.

The use of video to deliver curriculum-led learning keeps consistency in style and delivery. Not only that but the sessions can be organised into digestible chunks of work.

If a school has control of its own content, then even better! They can upload or embed videos where children can be taught by the teachers they are familiar with. The importance of this familiarity should not be underestimated. Children develop bonds with their teachers and trusted adults and respond better to people they already know. Plus, they are already used to their teaching style so the adaptation to being taught remotely will be easier.

2. Curriculum-led content, interactive activities and pathways

A good platform will also offer a wide range of interactive curriculum resources, which pupils can complete at home, without teacher intervention. This will help save teacher time and ensure learning can continue even if teacher resource is limited. 

Teachers should be able to set work from a library of activities and also arrange these in learning pathway sequences, with the ability to schedule these and add pre-set deadlines. This also facilitates summer learning if this is required.

3. Children being able to share their work

It provides a healthy structure for children to be able to upload a variety of work. A platform which allows children to upload written work, pictures and videos is engaging and means that there is a purpose for completing work. The upload process should be age appropriate and easy for children to complete themselves.

Where possible you should choose a provider where children can be set deadlines for submission, keeping them enthused and on track. Knowing they have a deadline and can share and submit work keeps them motivated and organised.

4. Teachers being able to give feedback and recognition

Just like adults, children yearn for praise and recognition. Being able to share work they have completed knowing it will be looked at and marked by their teacher is key to keeping them motivated while at home.

Teachers should be able to add comments and respond to pupils personally like they would in class. This will also help teachers identify knowledge gaps or areas where children might need more help, meaning they can remedy early on and reduce any form of learning loss.

An in-built reward feature where teachers can celebrate, and reward children’s work/effort is an excellent feature. Much like you would in-class, teachers can reward children and show praise where it is due. This is even more important in an environment where they do not have face-to-face recognition.

5. School community and communication with peers

Ask any child what they have missed about school and 99% of the time the answer will be ‘their friends’. To go from five days a week to being isolated at home with immediate family only has hit some children incredibly hard.

Being able to communicate with friends and teachers makes a huge impact on pupils feeling connected to their school life.

Having a safe, in-built communication system will yield untold benefits in the well-being of your pupils. However, it is imperative that the communication methods offered by a remote learning solution are safe and secure with inbuilt moderation tools and profanity filtering.

By using features such as emails, blogs and forums, children can stay connected to their friends, teachers and school community. This type of practical hands on experience will also help solidify the foundations for the online safety strand of the incoming Relationships Education guidelines.

6. Ease of use and ongoing support

Teachers always have a massive workload to contend with, so it is extremely important that any online learning platform they are provided with is quick to set up and easy to use. It is imperative that they feel confident with using the platform as this will ensure they can use it to its full potential. The children’s learning will be negatively impacted where teachers are not confident with using the learning platform as they may shy away from using the full range of features it has to offer.

When choosing a provider, assess the quality of ongoing support they offer to their customers. Ongoing support is crucial to the success of a learning platform in a school as it means that new staff (or perhaps staff who missed the initial training or who are just less confident) can always rely on the support team to answer any queries they may have around how to use the platform successfully.

Take a look at DB Primary 

Our learning platform, DB Primary does all the above and more. If you would like more informaton on how you can use this to teach remotely, please contact us for more information.

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