The combination of traditional face-to-face learning with online learning is having a positive impact on students. But blended learning isn’t as simple as tossing in some online coursework. In this two-part series, we will cover the most important steps to take to ensure a successful and effective blended learning strategy.
We will begin with Phase 1: Planning.
Define clear goals.
If you’re considering a blended learning model, outline student needs along with what improvements you’d like to see in student performance.
Make sure your goals align with district goals.
Be careful not to be too rogue with the implementation of blended learning. The district-wide curriculum should still be the guiding principle for how you design your program.
Research curriculum and technology options.
There are a variety of digital course materials you can incorporate into your curriculum, but be careful to not jump the gun. Align your course tools with the goals you defined, and make sure your tools integrate well with your learning management system for ease of use with single sign on.
Determine the right mix of online and face-to-face.
There is some debate around the correct ratio of online time to face-to-face time in a blended learning environment. There’s no need to dig too deep here, but it will be important to determine up front what the best combination of online and face-to-face instruction is for your particular blended learning model. Set the policy up front so students are aware of the expectations.
Include teachers, administrators and parents.
Try not to work in a silo when designing your blended learning program. Solicit feedback from teachers. After all, they will help implement the program so you definitely want their buy-in. Administrators will be key when making sure you get the technology you need along with any additional support. The parents will play a huge role because there will likely be an at home expectation for some of the online work. Having parent buy-in will ensure students’ home experience is as effective as their experience in the classroom.
Administrators will be key in making sure you get the technology that you need along with any additional support. Parents will play a huge role because there will likely be an at-home expectation for some of the online work. Having parent support will ensure that students’ home experience is as effective as their experience in the classroom.
Implementing a blended learning program at your school can have a huge impact on student performance and engagement. When you’re in your planning stage, remember these five steps to ensure you maximize your opportunity for success.