The world is facing the most significant public health crisis since the beginning of 2020. Coronavirus Pandemic has forced nearly all human beings to remain inside their homes, which is affecting their physical and mental health being. Not just inflicting this torment, this global crisis has also created a lot of fuss in everyone’s life. Being scared of getting out during the Covid-19 Pandemic, most people are taking their precautions to save themselves from this deadly virus pandemic.
Not only the health sector but Education, Business, Tourism, Economy, and almost everything has fallen prey to this pandemic. Offices, Shopping malls, Theatres and most of the non-essential services have been shut globally to retain the Virus, but the education sector was the first to be hit by this pandemic.
Somewhere in the middle of March, the State Government and Central Government started shutting down schools and colleges as a precautionary measure against the novel Coronavirus. These institutions have been closed for four months and there is still no certainty about when they would reopen.
The pandemic has severely hit essential processes for students like admissions in schools, board examinations, the entrance test for the colleges and universities, usually commenced in March. From CBSE Exams being cancelled to Universities conducting online exams, Education Sector shows to be affected by the pandemic.
In order to continue the learning of students, the government of most countries and states came up with an idea of E-Learning or Online Learning. It was this time when the period of Online Classes and Online Education ushered. Since there was almost no other option left and education of students could not be compromised, they had to resort out to this medium of education. But are these online courses doing their bit? Are Online Classes practical or useful? The most common answers that come in one’s mind is NO!
Let’s take a look at some of the ‘Serious Cons’ of these Online Classes/Online Courses with some Solutions.
⦁ Spending More Time On Phones Laptops, Affects Mental Health.
In the 21st Century, we’ve seen children are addicted to new gadgets and technology. Using phone, tabs, laptops or PC for several hours every day severely damages eyes as well as affects mental health. Long hours sitting in front of phones, laptops or PC’s can lead to changes in brain activity, reaction time and sleep patterns. E-Learning classes with school management software that are not well integrated are 4-5 hours long can have a severe effect on your Child’s Brain Development—not leaving behind the problems caused to eyes, due to long online lectures.
Solution– Talk to the respective teachers for half an hour break between classes, this will surely give the eyes, brain and the whole body to rest. You can also ask teachers to provide some creative home assignments so that children do some creative homework instead of only sitting in front of classes like Couch Potatoes! Also, you could ask your child to do Yoga for at least 30 minutes which relaxes one’s mind. A good school management software should be used by the schools for the smooth functioning of online classes.
⦁ Study Material Given In Online Classes
Surveys reveal that digital education has a limited scope as compared with the written and handy material which is provided in an educational institute. The authentication of these online materials is also kept on stake. As teachers circulate different online data from different websites, every website has its own method of doing things which leaves children in confusion. Again, online material will have an adverse effect on a child’s brain as they have to go through different data which causes irritation and frustration. The written content is easy to keep whereas the online material requires searching for particular topic among vast links or PDF’s provided to students through school management software.
Solution- Ask the teachers to make students write notes, which is more effective than the online material. Or if they are providing online study material, ask them to verify the contents and give the best-suited chapter or topic. The authentication of the study material is vital.
There is no doubt on this point that Classroom Education is more effective than these new modes of learning. The traditional method of chalk and board is preferred toward online education due to several factors. Firstly, the environment of educational institutions is such that it is meant for students to study. In contrast, a lot of distraction could occur in online classes which are supposed to be taken from itself.
The distractions can be many; for example, the child might start using some other apps during his/her online class or noises caused by other family members which ultimately affect their study time. Secondly, more Personal Attention is given in offline classes compared to less or no attention given to every student in Online Classes. Thirdly, Students are mentally prepared for rules and norms to be followed in schools/colleges, whereas at home, there is a lack of discipline.
Solution- School management software is considered as a viable solution for learning in this period, Parents can ask the department to keep personal doubts sessions for students so that they are clear with the concepts and are not confused about the topics. Children who are taking online classes should be given different rooms so that they can fully concentrate on their lessons and not get disturbed by household activities.
⦁ Network Issues Faced By Students
Globally, online education has met its demands. Although in Indian Scenario, it is still a battle for most of the students living in remote areas. Students living in urban areas can have access to the internet required, and mobile phones necessary for online education. Whereas, students living in villages are facing issues during this period as they don’t even have proper electricity. Students living in remote areas with little or no facilities to access online classes are compromising their education due to this pandemic. Building infrastructure in these areas for Online Classes is still a big task due to lack of budget.
Solution- The schools in these areas should take responsibility for these children and should send materials to students at their homes so that they are not left behind!
⦁ Teacher’s Unpreparedness
The shift from the offline medium of education to the online medium was so quick that most of the teachers did not get time to prepare themselves for this mode of education. Teachers across the country are finding out ways to continue teaching their pupils so that their studies are not compromised. Private Schools teachers are tech-savvy, which is a plus point for them as they know how to operate the school management system, but the same is not the scenario with other teachers.
Some teachers in rural areas who have access to mobile phones find it challenging to operate the online sessions for their students. The unpreparedness of teachers often leaves the students in a confused state. It is also a loss of valuable time of teaching, which was meant to impart knowledge and information to the students. Also, it is seen that teachers are less dedicated during online classes which is again a massive loss for students. In online classes, it is tough for students to retain what teachers are teaching; as a result, students do not understand the whole concept.
Solution- If you are a teacher, you can ask the senior in the department for more time so that you can prepare and learn the basics of how to operate video calls like zoom app. It should be the responsibility of schools/colleges that they should provide training sessions to teachers to conduct online classes. Parents can ask the teachers to show a little more effort in online classes, since their child is not able to grasp things, or they (Parents) should help students with their course, by teaching them personally.
As we have observed, above are some of the most common problems faced by students during online classes. Help your child understand as they are loaded with a lot of work, online classes and mental pressure to do things right. As most of their outdoor activities have been stopped to follow the social distancing norm, be with your child, engage in fun activities like painting, board games, cooking with them, learn school management system. During this time, when all of us are going through mental trauma, don’t let your child’s psychological and physical development hamper. Maintain a pleasant environment at home, talk to your kids, how they feel, what new things they want to try at home, as this time is meant to be with each other and understand each other more.