At Gateway High School, we understand that remote education is a learning process for everyone. Our team of talented educators is constantly searching for new ways to improve remote learning. While our students push forward with their education, teachers are working behind the scenes to make our digital classrooms even more effective than ever before.
With each passing day, schools across the United States are learning valuable lessons that can help make these online learning environments more inclusive, efficient, and enjoyable for millions of hard-working students. At Gateway High School, we strive to stay up to date on the latest developments within the educational community during this new chapter of America’s educational process. Here are five of the most important lessons we have learned after months of remote learning:
1. It’s Not All About Education
From the very beginning of the pandemic, Gateway High School prioritized the health and safety of our students. While continuing the educational process was important, we were most concerned about the actual well-being of our students. This was especially true with children who were more vulnerable than others.
According to a report from Bellwether Education Partners, this was a sentiment echoed by schools across the United States. Like Gateway High School, many institutions kept tabs on the safety of their student body, making sure that at-risk individuals had access to proper services and at least two meals a day.
2. Accessibility is Key
Another key lesson learned during this period has been the importance of accessibility. A recent survey by the US Census Bureau found that 4.4 million students do not have reliable access to the internet for online learning. Of the students that did have reliable access, 60% stated that they had received a laptop or similar device from their school.
At Gateway High School, we believe that everyone should feel included in the remote learning process, regardless of their access to resources. We recognize the importance of accessibility, and we are taking steps to address this concern.
3. The Perils of “Zoom Fatigue”
Many schools across the nation are becoming familiar with a phenomenon known as “Zoom Fatigue.” Compared to a traditional classroom environment, students cannot focus for as long while learning through video conferencing apps. Most educators agree that the maximum amount of time for these lessons should be about 40 minutes long with breaks in between.
4. The Importance of Variety
Gateway has learned that we can make remote learning can be fun and exciting by promoting a sense of variety. Virtual cooking classes and soccer skills lessons can give students a much-needed break from purely academic learning. By mixing it up with these fun lessons, educators can keep students engaged. Many students require more than a barrage of academic lectures. To keep these young adults motivated, Gateway High School will give our students a chance to giggle, be social, and have fun.
5. Remote Learning Means More Individualization
Like many other educational institutions across the nation, Gateway High School has discovered the unique benefits of remote learning. One clear example is the fact that a digital environment can provide more individualized learning for our students.
In this environment, it’s easier and more convenient for students to schedule one-on-one time with their teachers. During these sessions, teachers can discuss each student’s goals, challenges, and priorities. Gateway High School will strive to emphasize these benefits going forward, allowing our students to experience the full potential of online learning.