New teaching methods have evolved to keep up with the times and have adapted by integrating technology to remain current with new learning models. Blended learning is a product of our rapidly changing learning environment. While technology shows no sign of letting up, it is all-the-more reason to embrace it for the advantages it brings! Blended Learning is a mixture of learning methods that incorporate multiple teaching modals–most frequently eLearning and traditional face-to-face learning according to the way that it is defined on TeachThought. While education experts continue to debate the efficacy of this hybrid learning, its very existence has challenged them to re-evaluate not just technology’s place in (and out of) the classroom, but also how to reach and teach students more effectively.
What is Blended Learning, Why is it important?
The Oxford dictionary defines blended learning as a style of education in which students learn via electronic and online media as well as traditional face-to-face teaching. This method of learning which combines classroom and online education is not only going places, but it is assisting in the emergence of new inferences about learning. One Of those inferences is that not only does online education supplement learning, but it can also transform and improve the learning process. In this blog we have already learned what Blended Learning is and why it is important, now we will discuss how you can reap its benefits in your classroom on a completely online platform.
Remote blended learning (also referred to as Enriched Virtual), is learning that occurs when the student focuses on solely online classwork while only intermittently meeting with the teacher as needed. There are various types of blended learning that have proven effective in many classrooms. In the online approach, students wouldn't see teachers face-to-face on a daily basis. This approach is often contrasted with Flipped Classroom, where the students are introduced to content at home, and practice working through it at school supported by a teacher and/or peers. Instead, it is entirely remote and involves teachers meeting intermittently with students virtually.
What Elements Can Make Blended Learning Effective?
As long as we are putting it to use, Blended Learning is evolving. We are constantly learning of its advantages and the elements that make blended learning effective. Here are some examples of elements that have made blended learning effective in the past and how you can implement it in your classroom:
- Facilitate Metacognitive awareness: This is a key practice for student overall success. It's important students understand what helps them learn and apply strategies proactively!
- Encourage collaborative & interactivelearning: let the students' voices be heard! Online instruction is more effective in collaboration.
- Incorporate interactive content: Increase engagement and interests to more diverse learners using interactive materials provided on the internet.
- Provide Immediate Feedback: Immediate feedback is essential to understanding difficult concepts, triggering retrieval mechanisms, and correcting misconceptions.
- Create a learner-centered Education: Be open to give up control of the learning process; Make your students active participants in their learning.
Blended Learning Outlook and research
Blended learning has the potential to transform a largely transmissive mode of learning into a largely interactive one. Every childhood education program (e.g., sesame street) understands learning occurs with every student in different ways. Therefore, their design appeals to all auditory, sensory, and visual learners. The true question is if blended learning is really effective. According to the 2010 Meta-analysis published by the U.S. Department of Education, yes it is. The analysis found that students exposed to both face-to-face and online education were more successful than students entirely in one camp or the other. A scientific literature review published by the Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education found that there are a number of factors that contribute to the effectiveness of blended learning, it states;
Students need very clear pathways that they can guide themselves through with autonomy and self-criticism. As long as the priority in your teaching style is to know your learners and learn new ways to meet their needs through technology, blended learning has proven to be very successful. As blended learning grows more common in classrooms, it is expected to develop into something far beyond our imagination in the next coming years.
So this week put the research into practice by experimenting with ways that you can implement online blended learning in your lesson plan as we teach our students from the comfort of our homes. Whether it be through practicing different methods of immediate feedback or facilitating metacognitive awareness, it is worth it to use the time we have to find new effective ways to present your content to your classroom online.