If your class were to move remotely overnight this year, is your plan ready? According to researchers from Texas, who studied the rapid turn of last spring, 3 keys should absolutely be found there to make it a success: well-being, engagement and feedback.
Researchers from Baylor University, in Texas, discussed with leaders from 112 schools in spring and summer 2020 and identified three themes on which schools should focus in their response plan to a context as uncertain as the one we are living in: well-being, engagement and feedback (both classroom and remote). Here they are in summary.
“Before focusing on academic content, the schools that did best (in spring 2020) are those that first looked after the well-being of teachers and students”. After all, well-being is the basis of the famous "Maslow's pyramid," which establishes a hierarchy of needs that every human would need to meet. Once well-being is achieved, readiness to learn would be promoted. For teachers, the researchers noted that well-being was established when they were regularly asked these two questions: "How are you?" And "What do you need?" ".
"Pupils don't learn if they're not motivated." Indeed, the researchers have identified what they call the 4Cs of academic motivation: content, collaboration, competition and creation. We will have the opportunity to detail them in a future article.
Used well, various digital tools can boost engagement and motivation (e.g. Nearpod and Pear Deck, which allow, among other things, to add interaction in an online presentation or to conduct icebreaker activities).
Improvement comes through practice, but also through constructive feedback. Many tools aimed at increasing student engagement also provide immediate feedback. Whatever the application, it is recommended that teachers establish criteria for successful completion of an assignment with students. To be effective, these criteria include examples of what will be considered successful, as well as reasons why students would like to succeed or improve.
For more information, read the original article by Jonathan Becker, professor at Baylor University, on the Edutopia website.
In the end, these keys should also inspire the daily life of the class, whether it takes place at school or at a distance!
Other free digital tools that stimulate interaction and engagement are also available, including Edpuzzle, Thinglink, Genially. Also consult the guide Accessible tools for distance learning, from Carrefour Éducation.