In this enforced age of online education, one question remains un-answered for teachers, how to retain the interest of students in academics? Students are spending a huge amount of time on virtual screens be it online classes, note-taking, projects, leisure activities like playing games, watching YouTube videos, social media and the list goes on. One of the better ways to deal with this problem is self-paced education. How much to learn, when to learn, when to give exams, all these are decided by the learner, of course with some constraints. No peer pressure, no forcing by parents, no competition, no fear of failure. Moreover, the youth wants to do many interesting activities like blogging, vlogging, or following other passions from a very young age.
In the scenarios, as highlighted above, if education is paced as per the needs of the learner, we can fight the big issues of education: disengagement in academics, drop-out, etc. and help learners for better retention of knowledge, self-motivation, lifelong learners and better capability to face real-life situations. Students from urban and remote areas shall benefit from this type of education.
Further, enhancing creativity in teachers is also the need of this hour. Online material and books both support self-paced education. Teachers play an important role of facilitator and content developer. The lesson plans and contents have to be modeled in a manner that students enjoy the freedom to select the activities for a particular concept; once mastered, it can go for self-paced assessment.
In conclusion, teachers need to shift from pure teaching and create interesting self-paced learning material. This shall help in increasing the interest of the students while sustaining and using 21st-century technological advancement. Education is changing rapidly and we teachers have to adapt to it.
One more challenging opportunity awaiting us, teachers!