Online vs Offline learning: Pro and Cons
8th April 2020, Singapore will be going into digital online learning for all primary, secondary and college students for 1 month until 4th May 2020. So far schools are preparing materials online and delivering content in byte chunks fearing technology will fail in one so they are investing in multiple platforms, not only SLS (Student learning Space). Schools are doing Zoom meeting, Ezhishi, youtube etc.
So next week onwards, we will see schools going to full power home-based learning. SLS, zoom will go full power too as uses increase dramatically.
So now we will go understand the SLS First. SLS is developed by MOE and GovTech and its a student centric learning platform. All the teaching and learning materials are in these youtube channels: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCVG2Mc61vpFdfENd1iewyiw/videos and https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCgaG79beKqmwGfiScxmeuVA/videos.
Next is Zoom, Zoom.us has been growing in popularity since march 2020. Its easy to use interface and good quality really helped meeting and online classes.
Online learning Pros
The main pro of online learning is that of location. You do not need to travel using online learning.
Next is that Time flexibility online learning can offer. People just need to fix a time and you can have lesson.
Online Learning Cons
Firstly, Discipline is the one thing you cannot require in online learning, When in school time, students need to go school attend lessons, do homework. Now every student is let go of the one thing that builds habit and discipline. So students that are younger will need to time to build their discipline and habit again at home. They are to wake up at 7 am to start going through SLS and Zoom to do home work and assignments. And parents can either enforce discipline or do nothing. So the job is now for parents to choose.
Secondly, with online learning using electronic devices, parents need to control their children’s tiktok viewing, youtube viewings as those are mostly entertaining and a distraction from learning. if parents have younger children that have such habits, then parents need to enforce rules of usage of electronic device in case children become glued to such entertainment and affect learning.
The Rest of learning affected?
Teaching and learning for the most part happens when knowledge is transferred and understanding is assured. And the best learning happens because of demonstration, discussion, practicing and teaching others according to the learning pyramid.
So if the learning is designed according to the above best practice of learning, I think online learning could be good.
Next I think learning has to be focus and systematic to be useful.
I think online learning can help get pupils to stay home to learn and stop the spread of the covid-19 virus. But the effectiveness is totally up to the parents and teacher as they need to make good use of the meeting apps platform for best learning experience to happen.