Minimising class disruptions during coronavirus outbreak with e-learning solutions
‘All countries must strike a fine balance between protecting health, preventing economic and social disruption, and respecting human rights,’ said the World Health Organization (WHO) Director General in a briefing on 12 March 2020. To reduce the rapid infection rate of COVID-19, which the WHO has labelled a ‘global pandemic’, governments across multiple regions have opted to close schools for an extended period and are encouraging citizens to practise social distancing.
Governments in 113 countries have now announced or implemented the closure of educational institutions in an attempt to contain the global pandemic … impacting over 849.4 million children and youth. – UNESCO, 18 March 2020
Being unable to visit campus complicates the academic year, but this hurdle can be overcome if schools are able to provide learners and educators with digital alternatives.
How is Snapplify helping schools to minimise disruption?
As always, global edtech company Snapplify remains focused on providing e-learning solutions that empower educators and enable students to achieve their best.
- Access to much of Snapplify’s award-winning technology is available for free.
Snapplify Engage is an award-winning e-learning platform and digital library solution. Any school can register for Engage for free and access tools that enable learning and reading to continue uninterrupted, from home.
- Snapplify’s newly launched Teacher Benefits programme is being made available to all teachers in affected areas for free during this period via Snapplify Engage.
Any teacher registered on the platform can access the Snapplify Teacher Benefits programme, which includes key educational resources that are either discounted or available for free.
Snapplify is currently inviting publishers of world-class educational materials to join their Teacher Benefits programme by making some or all of their content freely available to teachers over this period.
- Teachers are able to bridge the gap by creating and sharing resources that their students can use for home study via Snapplify Engage.
The Engage e-learning platform allows users to share teacher-created, multimedia resource materials with students. Teachers can film a science experiment, create a video lecture series, record an educational podcast and use audio files to read aloud to students – the opportunities are endless. Educators can also share written resources, like notes and worksheets, for students to access along with their prescribed e-textbooks and other supplementary resources from the digital library.
- Snapplify has extended its online technical support to ensure that students and teachers have access to the support they need while transitioning to digital tools.
To ensure that teachers and students have all the tech support they need during this time, Snapplify’s live chat support hours have been extended to 6 am to 10 pm, seven days a week. The Snapplify Knowledge Base is also packed with helpful, step-by-step articles to guide schools, students and parents as they use the platform.
How does e-learning support educators and learners long term?
E-learning solutions come in all shapes and sizes
Going digital isn’t just a stop-gap for times of crisis. In fact, e-learning is able to solve many common issues experienced by educational institutions. Although some problems are common to many schools, it is important to recognise that all schools need flexibility to build the best possible digital ecosystem that will work long term.
21st-century skills for life and work
The modern workplace bears little resemblance to what it was as recent as 20 years ago. Learners who are in school now will graduate into a space where 21st-century skills (like critical thinking, creativity, collaboration, and communication) are as important to future job success as technical skills.
Google for Education recently reported that, ‘Beyond tools and technology, students need to develop new skills to solve tough problems, collaborate effectively, and express ideas in new ways.’ Having the opportunity to practise continued classwork from a distance teaches a host of soft skills that put learners ahead of the curve; such as good communication, time management, flexibility and responsibility.
Promoting digital responsibility
In line with many of the points already raised, teaching digital responsibility alongside curriculum content is gaining popularity among educators as an essential future skill for learners to have once they enter tertiary education and/or the work environment. In the UK, 99% of teachers have stated that online safety should be part of the school curriculum, and experts have stressed the importance of digital citizenship and digital literacy for learners to be able to participate fully and safely in the world around them.
While working remotely, children will naturally engage with technology more and more. This is an opportunity for schools to promote and cultivate healthy, safe, and responsible relationships with technology.
Join forces with Snapplify
As the situation surrounding COVID-19 evolves and its ramifications unfold, Snapplify is actively engaging with partners to find collaborative ways to support schools further in the coming weeks. If you want to lend your support to initiative, reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.