What is eLearning for kids? How do you introduce children to eLearning? “A mere exchange of information doesn’t engross a child and does not add to his wisdom in any manner” – Benjamin Franklin.
eLearning has brought about a tremendous change in the growth of the education sector during the past couple of decades. With the growth of technology and the availability of various digital resources to support eLearning, more and more parents are taking eLearning seriously and coming forward to provide their children with a superior and quality education. Schools and training institutes around the world have adopted innovative and attractive ways that make online learning more fun, interactive, engaging, and appealing.
A learning system for kids based on the formal method of learning, with the help of technology and digital resources, is the manner in which, we impart eLearning to children. The use of computers with an internet connection forms the basis of eLearning. eLearning is available in both online and offline modes. Various forms of eLearning are one-to-one-learning, group learning, video-based learning, webinars, etc.,
As a kid, children have an innate curiosity within them to learn and explore new things around them. But somewhere down the line, these innate qualities get diminished, and they start disliking school and studies. Fortunately, there are a number of ways to instill a sense of learning among children and develop interest, confidence, motivation, and attitude
Today, our new-gen kids are tech-savvy and enjoy spending their time in front of their tab, lap, or smartphones playing games, which was not the case a couple of decades ago. So introducing them to eLearning shouldn’t be a big deal. However, in recent years, technology has played a meaningful role in the educational sector, by engaging our young learners in eLearning with courses like Abacus, Coding, and Spoken English, etc, with captivating imagery interface and animation, gamified learning techniques, etc., that is interactive, simple and easy to understand. Online Learning has become increasingly popular as they enable kids to engage and socialize, and learn at their own pace.
The following are some proven tips and strategies that can help introduce your children to eLearning. They are:
- Develop an atmosphere of learning for children: The physical atmosphere should be such that it creates and promotes learning activities in children. The key to developing a well conducive environment is by engaging with learners, having playful and gamified activities, promoting discussion and interaction, building positive relationships, supportiveness, etc. Teachers must incorporate movement, interaction, and tactile experiences by using manipulation. For instance, take the case of the Abacus Course (please refer www.edujournal.com for more details). Initially, the beads are moved using a device called an Abacus, from the bottom to the middle partition, or from the top to the middle partition of the frame, which indicates numerical values, from which mathematical calculations can be performed. In the later stages, with constant practice, the device is physically eliminated, and the figure of the Abacus is depicted in our minds, and the calculations are performed with greater speed and accuracy, by the movements of both our hands (ie., on the virtual device placed in our mind).
- Virtual Classroom sessions: This app enriches the classroom experience and provides positive reinforcement and communication management among parents, teachers, and students.
- 3. Introduce game-based playful learning: Gamified learning helps children develop essential skills like logic and math skills, analytical and problem-solving skills, etc., This kind of learning makes the learners use their imagination and discover new possibilities in a fun and interactive way. For instance, Flight Simulators used by pilots during their training session is an example of game-based learning.
- Use captivating visuals: Kids respond well to visuals especially when they are engaging and appealing. Bold and colorful captivating images, graphics, animation, etc., can draw children to the learning process. Try to build curiosity and interest in the child and make the session lively and engaging.
- Affordability and flexibility: The cost involved in studying in a traditional setting is much higher compared to studying through eLearning. Therefore you can have a high-quality education at an economic cost.
- Making the course content interactive: Having interactive content like quizzes, polls, assignments, projects, chatting, video conferencing, etc., can spark interest in your child. Easy access to course content and engaging course content can improve interest in learning. The classes may also include their parents to enable them to experience their child’s development as well as provide support to their kid.
- Provide a short study material and plenty of tasks for practice sessions: Often, young learners wouldn’t have reached a stage where they can read and understand the content from the study material, which should be avoided. Instead, narrate by animated visuals on the screen. Also, children have shorter attention spans, and this aspect should be kept in mind while designing an eLearning course material. Provide them with shorter activities and also keep them hooked in front of the screen only for a minimum duration. Use voiceovers instead of text to provide information.
8 Unlocking your child’s interests: Allow children to explore and discover the topics that are of interest to them. Have plenty of choices in your curriculum. Identify your child’s passion and interest and provide them with resources that will help them to further explore their interests.
- Collaborative pedagogy: The emphasis on learners, teachers, and parents working together in a group makes learning collaborative and interesting. Project-based learning is one such approach where children can learn topics through problem-solving and improve their competencies. When your child demonstrates their curiosity by asking some questions, do your best to answer them promptly and clearly.
- Be supportive and encouraging: Be encouraging, supportive, and motivating your children, without putting undue pressure on them, and do not compare your child’s performance with other students. When the child experiences some sort of pressure, there is a strong tendency to withdraw from learning.
The above tips can help you to introduce your children to eLearning. Online learning broadens one’s scope for academic learning by increasing engagement, and collaboration through advanced multimedia tools, and online resources that provide easy accessibility and flexibility which ultimately enhances the learning experience. eLearning can provide your child with a perfect opportunity to discover their innate creativity, talent, and interest. It gives your child good exposure and a wonderful opportunity to learn new things. But as a parent/guardian of your child, it’s your responsibility to provide the best and appropriate guidance and resources for your child, so that they can utilize their full potential to develop their skills and talent which ultimately benefits their growth and success. Schools and training institutes should utilize this trend to improve the overall development of the educational sector even more and utilize digitally assisted learning tools (ie., authoring tools) to improve learning and teaching capabilities. With everything turning digital, and technologies evolving, it has had its impact on the education sector as well, and eLearning, no doubt, will become the most sought-after technology in the years to come.