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Home and Back Again: Maintaining Focus When Learning Goes From In-Person to Virtual

There is a transition in the education system from in-person learning to virtual learning, sometimes with a back and forth practice consistent with educational whiplash. In virtual learning, teachers interact with students via the internet using media such as e-mails, online forums, instant messaging, and face-to-face digital lessons. Virtual learning uses various computer software, delivering instruction to students anytime and anywhere.

Students and teachers alike struggle to focus on learning when teaching/learning continues to go home and back again. Let's explore ways to focus when learning goes from in-person to virtual. 

Maintaining Focus in Virtual Learning

Students who have been studying in-person classes may find it hard to adapt to virtual learning. However, when the circumstances become difficult, it may be necessary to adjust to online courses. Several practices can maintain the focus of students during virtual learning.

Maintain a Consistent Schedule

Virtual learning may be fun when students do not have to meet with their teacher all the time, but also it may be hard to focus. Having consistency will allow students to focus and set aside a schedule to tackle their assignments without thinking about different tasks.

Establish Virtual Learning Rules & Etiquette

Establishing virtual learning rules and etiquette is essential for virtual learning. Teachers need to control their classroom even when it takes place online. Virtual learning rules and etiquette will offer methods that systematically define and set out behaviors, skills, strategies, and attitudes that should be present during all learning sessions. 

Create an Assignment Deadline Schedule

An assignment deadline schedule is appropriate to remind students about completing projects and assignments. Assignment deadline schedules assist students in handling projects and tasks without the last-minute rush. Students who do not attend in-person classes may have independent due dates and times to manage assignments and projects. It is important to have an assignment deadline schedule that will guide approaching homework, quizzes, and participating in discussion activities.

Encourage and Model a Comfortable Workplace

A comfortable workplace is essential to allow students to get their work done quickly and handle many projects at once. Setting up a comfy workplace means having a well-lit area and comfortable and supportive seating while eliminating outside distractions such as other family members or noise. As their teacher, you can model this environment and encourage others to make changes as needed. 

Minimize Distractions

It is crucial to do away with any distractions during learning hours. Social media, games, phones, computers, phones, and apps may hinder successful learning since they distract students. A student who welcomes distractions when they are learning may end up failing. When learners allow distractions to interfere with their learning process, they pile up and consume most of their time when they should be working or studying.

Take Breaks

When creating your lesson plan, set aside time for students to take a break, stretching, getting water, going to the bathroom, etc., are much needed when sitting at a desk or table for hours at a time. These breaks may allow students to interact with one another while providing a much-needed brain break. 

Encourage Students to Ask Questions

It's usual for students to struggle to understand concepts being taught; this may especially true when learning in a digital classroom. Online classes should not limit learners from asking for help. A school that resorts to online courses should provide students with the necessary resources and offer tutoring services or extra time to finish assignments. 

Increase Your Communication with Students

Virtual learning gives students some independence that may make them feel like they no longer need to communicate with their peers or teachers since they are learning away from school. That is not the case; rather, this should be when a student maintains a close relationship with peers and teachers to improve their work. A student who collaborates with their peers when handling projects has a more successful outcome in their learning.

Implement Exciting and Interactive Lessons

Teachers should make online classes exciting and interactive. Assign tasks or assignments that make students active participants in the online class. Allowing students to decompress when they begin to lose focus assists them in re-energizing their brain, which helps them focus.

Final Thoughts

While the need to transition back and forth between in-person and online learning is a headache, you can still find success in teaching and learning online. Focus on setting schedules and encouraging eliminating distractions while providing breaks when needed.

Written by Rosslyn Kati
Education World Contributor
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