In India, the academic year 2020 – 2021 has ended. Some schools have even started with the new academic year 2021-2022. However, kids are still facing problems with online learning.
Though, teachers are helpful in guiding students to understand the lessons. They are also making it easy for students to give tests using Google Forms or Microsoft Forms. Lessons are being explained using Powerpoint presentations. Study materials are shared with students in PDF form.
However, students are missing school. Local Circles conducted a survey dated March 31st, 2021. Only 25% of Indian parents are willing to send their children to school if schools reopen in 2021-2022.
This means distance learning could continue for a few years.
Therefore, we must think of innovative ways and tools to teach children. We must overcome problems through constructive online learning.
Let’s take a look at the problems faced by students in online learning:
- Many kids are facing health problems. Younger kids are forced to stare at the screen for long hours.
- Kids are suffering from headaches, deteriorated eyesight, obesity, depression, etc.
- There is hardly any physical activity for students. This has resulted in graver problems like obesity, high cholesterol, etc.
- Less interaction with peers and friends has also caused mental stress to many. Many have become introverts.
- A larger group of students are suffering from bad behavior and disturbance from other students who are unruly during classes. This has an adverse effect on their studies.
- Teachers are rushing through the syllabus due to a lack of time. Therefore, many students are unable to understand the lectures or topics.
- Weak students are unable to understand concepts. This is one of the major problems faced during online classes.
- Students lack peer-to-peer interaction.
- Many kids are also attending online tuitions. The child is under tremendous pressure at school and the tuition classes. Hence, many students are suffering from depression.
- Many kids no longer have an interest in studies. This could be because of the lack of a study environment at home.
- To avoid paying the tuition fees, some parents have refrained from sending kids to online classes.
- Some students resort to cheating during online exams. This is going to affect their performance in the long run.
- Some kids are pretending to attend online classes. During their class time, they are using Whatsapp or Tik Tok, or YouTube during class hours.
- Parents lack knowledge about monitoring tools. On the whole, kids are unable to focus on their studies.
- Some teachers lack knowledge about the latest distance learning technologies.
- Some schools are laying down strict protocols for students. Students are monitored by teachers during classes and exams.
- However, some teachers are lenient and provide no supervision during exams. In this case, the child could resort to cheating and eventually lose self-confidence.
- Did you know that underprivileged students are facing graver problems?
- Yes, parents cannot afford a smartphone or a laptop. It has forced many students to drop out of school or commit suicide.
Solutions to some of the problems:
One or more of the above problems are faced by the entire student community. On a positive note, many issues can be resolved.
- The states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu have been forward-thinking in coming up with online studies solutions.
- Students are shown grade-wise recorded study programs by teachers on a dedicated TV channel. This is a positive initiative, and other states must follow.
- The Ministry of Education must encourage state governments to take such initiatives and be inclusive of all students.
- The Education policy must aim to bring some new ideas to the table. My 12-year-old daughter made one suggestion. She said, “Mummy studying subjects like History, Geography and Civics is boring”.
- So, a better way to learn is through grade-wise series, dramas, movies, etc. The series must be relayed on the TV as part of the curriculum.
- The Education policy must aim towards an open book exam pattern. Online assessments must not rely on bookish knowledge.
- Hence, teachers must focus on strengthing concepts, and not just completing the syllabus.
- Parents must be aware of various child monitoring tools. Such monitoring tools help parents maintain the study environment at home.
- Therefore, I use Microsoft Family Safety Control Program. It is by far the best Monitoring Tool I have come across.
- State-run schools must take rapid steps to save the next academic year for students. Communities must come together to address such issues.
- Corporates have an opportunity to step in. Can’t they divert a tiny bit of money into providing for their local communities? Yes, they can and they must.
- Thus, the above survey by Local Circles (scroll up to read) shows that administrations and schools must look at strengthening distance learning.
- It is important to upskill all teachers to effectively teach online.
- Provide teachers with easy-to-use teaching tools.
- Adopt the hybrid way of teaching.
- Schools must be self-sustainable and self-dependent. They must invest in distance learning applications or adopt education technology.
- So, schools must join hands with parents to build a suitable study environment for the children.
Hence, students need support from schools, teachers, parents, peers, and governments to overcome the above problems. So, this will help students make the most of the current pandemic situation.
Therefore, governments, corporates, and communities must come forward with solutions. The solutions must be sustainable, and futuristic for all students.
Since some parents are disappointed with the current situation. They have opted for Homeschooling over Traditional Schooling. Learn more about which is better, Homeschooling and Traditional Schooling.
In conclusion, it is our responsibility as citizens to save the future of the students. So, let’s save the future of our country and move forward with worthwhile solutions.