The E-learning journey
“Technology is just a tool. In terms of getting the kids working together and motivating them, the teacher is most important.” – Bill Gates
At the Elite English School after almost 2 months of e-learning, I have been thinking about the impact of technology on teaching and learning. In the initial days of our online learning journey, teachers were afraid of moving education efforts online. Some were hesitant to “teach online” because they felt they were teaching themselves out of a job, somehow proving that they were nothing more than grading machines and forum monitors.
This, to me, is where e-learning and the traditional classroom will one day form a union: compensating for one where the other lacks.In a traditional classroom, teachers are on their toes, trying to engage their students at every moment. But students don’t always cooperate—maybe they’re bored,zoned out, or too focused on the sun outside to pay attention to math.Accounting
for a student’s individual attention span is also an issue in traditional classrooms. Some students fatigue after 30 minutes, others after 15, and there’s no way to adjust for that in a real-time environment.Despite these problems, once the teacher and the student meet in the middle and find that engagement, it’s magic. Being surrounded by like-minded people, actively participating with peers, and seeing students come alive once things click is a social energy you can’t replace—even with AI.
One of the ways e-learning has tried to mimic the social aspects of a classroom is with tools like messaging boards, groups, and yes, sometimes chatboxes. They give students the sense they aren’t just staring at an empty message board, but they are talking with real people about their homework. Students naturally learn from one another while solving problems and working collaboratively in a traditional classroom. They’re validated and encouraged by face-to-face time with a teacher that doesn’t come from a pre-recorded video.
But even though e-learning has become an education equalizer, it’s still not a replacement for the traditional classroom. Sure, the technology is advancing, but it’s not flawless. Just like any new, burgeoning innovation, e-learning faces its own challenges.
These past 2 months every teacher has transformed into a researcher -frantically looking for the right tools, videos and what not. Everyone one of us is adapting. Our little ones were suddenly plunged into this new environment and believe me – they have emerged successfully. The first few weeks found our young learners being amused with their controls, seeing their friends & teachers online and getting used to sitting in front on their screens. This has been a whole new concept for all of us. Though we are adapting we deeply miss each other and that is the truth.
Mrs. Reshmy Shibu
Middle School Supervisor
The Elite English School