Because of the impressive advancements in technology, learning is made possible whenever and wherever you are. If it weren’t for the combined powers of these progresses and of the Internet, online classes wouldn’t exist.
Traditional schooling is peerless, and it will never be surpassed. Its overall experience has a huge impact on every child’s life, not just in the classroom but most importantly, in the real world. However, there are times when traditional schooling is or has to be set aside. There are two most common reasons. One is the homeschooling preference of parents and two is the need for everyone to stay at home, like during the COVID-19 pandemic. In these two situations, the education setting is online.
Online classes have many advantages, but the challenges that this format presents cannot be ignored. Surely, there’s no place like home, so it’s most likely cozier to study in it, but it’s also quite difficult to be too comfortable and to lack complete educational facilities. The benefits of online classes can be maximized and the setbacks can be overcome if everything students need for their virtual classes are provided.
Check out this list of 5 must-haves of every student attending online classes from home. Take note of them for your kids who are currently or who will soon be online learners.
1 – WORKING DIGITAL DEVICES AND ACCESSORIES
The most important item that each online learner should inevitably have is a functional digital device, such as a smartphone, a tablet, a laptop or a desktop computer. It would be best if it’s a laptop or a computer because these have bigger screens, have more storage space and have more purposes that suit online classes.
The electronic equipment must be working well. A laggy one is very inconvenient because it may interrupt the students’ learning and may get them disconnected from their on-going online classes.
Accessories for their digital devices are essential also. A pair of properly working earphones with a microphone is a must, so students can hear their teachers and classmates and converse well with them. Flash drives might be needed, especially when storing and transferring important files from one device to another.
2 – STRONG AND STABLE INTERNET CONNECTION
If the student has a personal computer but does not have an Internet connection, it’s useless for online classes. Of course, the Internet is compulsory if one needs to connect with other people online and to do research. What’s more, it must be strong and stable.
A poor Internet connection will ruin the quality of online learning. Students will not fully understand their educators teaching if it’s choppy or often getting cut off. They will have a hard time accomplishing assignments and projects that primarily need online research. Doing group work online will be very tough as well.
Furthermore, the Internet must be always available and accessible and not only at specific hours. The time and duration of online classes cannot be adjusted, especially if the student with a problematic Internet connection is part of a big class of students. Adjusting is possible only if the kid is enrolled in solo online tutoring. The parent can talk to the mentor regarding the schedule of online tutoring, considering the Internet connection accessibility issue.
3 – REQUIRED SOFTWARE
In order for the teachers and students to meet in online classes, there are applications to be downloaded to their devices. Specific social networking websites and other communication software are mandatory.
There are software that cannot be installed and cannot run on mobile. This is the biggest reason why a good-quality laptop or computer is more convenient and ideal for online classes than smartphones and tablets.
Students, especially those who are not knowledgeable on how to use technology yet, must be assisted by older family members when it comes to downloading these programs.
4 – A NOISE-FREE STUDY SPACE
The house is safe and snuggly, but keep in mind that it’s not always the case. There are times when it’s busy around. Know that students need a noise-free study space for their online classes.
When the kids have this, they and their classes will not be interrupted by unnecessary sounds, thuds and family members walking by. It would be fine if there are visitors and playful toddlers at home too. At the same time, people in the house won’t need to be very limited in moving around or making sounds if the students are separate from them and in a different house area.
Some houses are not very spacious though, so people are crowding in only one or two rooms. It’s not easy to find a good spot for the students in the family to have their online classes. If this is the case, other family members really need to be more cautious to avoid disturbing them.
Additionally, in that peaceful study area, there must be an ergonomic chair and table that will keep the students at ease and their things orderly.
5 – PROPER VENTILATION
The study space should have proper ventilation: good lighting and good air circulation. This is a huge necessity to keep students relaxed while studying and healthy as they stay there for long hours everyday.
ONLINE CLASS MUST-HAVES
It is very important for parents who plan to homeschool their kids to understand all the demands of virtual classes, if ever they will also enroll in online tutoring and coaching. This is a substantial factor to consider.
On the other hand, parents who have kids enrolled in traditional schooling but need to go for online classes now also have to totally comprehend this, so they can properly provide and assist their children in this education setup.
Lastly, schools must also be sincerely sensitive about their students to know if everyone is capable of acquiring and using these must-haves for their online classes while at home. They should adjust if there’s a big lack or provide for their students as much as they can.
The features of online classes have their own unique charms. Not to mention, teaching and learning methods have been evolving as well. Because people can communicate virtually, with audio and video, schooling is virtually possible too.
Everything seems easier if it’s online, but don’t forget that online classes are not as easy as they seem. The first and foremost requirements are the student must-haves mentioned above. If students don’t have these, online learning will still not work and will be ineffective.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Nicole Ann Pore is a writer, an events host and a voice over artist. Quality and well-researched writing is her worthwhile avenue to enlighten and delight others about things that matter. She is a daytime writer for InFlow Education, expert tutoring services in Australia. Nicole graduated Cum Laude from De La Salle University Manila, Philippines with a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication Arts.