Yes, we’ve been beaten hard by the recent pandemia but tried to carry on with our activities.
After the first bewildering weeks that forced to cancel the second steering meeting scheduled in May in Thiene, Italy, we virtually gathered on conference call and rescheduled a bit our commitments.
Working remote has been a challenge and a surprise. Teaching in a technical school has been an advantage because we already used some tools and applications to support traditional teaching. The challenge was in using them everyday efficiently.
Lecturing, exercising, testing and getting a feedback are the traditional ingredients of classical teaching that if supported by new technology can reach unexpected effectiveness. Think of both syncronic – conference meeting on dedicated platforms- and diacronic lecturing allowing the recording of instructions or lectures that can be seen at any moment ( for example screencast-o-matic a platform for making a video). Exercising gets more involving when students are given integrated worksheets using different apps or on line resources. Wizer.Me, for example, is a platform where teachers can create engaging interactive worksheets. Ted Ed videos offer a variety of challenging matters on different topics that can boost a discussion or be the base for introducing a topic. LearningApps.org is a Web 2.0 application to support learning and teaching processes with small interactive modules. Those modules can be used directly in learning materials, but also for self studying.
Turning to non – traditional teaching during the Covid period we have continued in engaging students in different activities where the role of the teacher is that of a mentor or facilitator.
Problem solving and the flipped classroom were the two predominant methodologies used during the lock-down period both because they are integrated in any coursebook and because they are strategic in the building of knowledge and professional competences.
Anyhow, it was not that easy. We experienced problems with bad connections, lines jams, headaches, high nervous tensions. On the other hand, there was a great enthusiasm in finding new apps, strategies and solutions to keep students’ motivation up.
It was also a surprise because we realised that lessons needed to be more carefully planned in remote teaching and they are more dense, no-time wasting but also less involving. After three-months remote teaching students told us that they missed everything of the school also the teachers!
It’s been a confirmation of our ideas on the learning process that also involves senses and emotions.
Thinking about the next steps in the designing of the Management Skills Course, we might figure out a good balance between lessons in presence and remote comprising the classic traditional methodology with the non traditional and paradoxically the practice during this difficult and challenging period can guide us in choosing the most successful methodologies and tools.