Each student has his own learning rhythm: some of them don’t have any difficulty to work independently while others need more attention and continuous feedback and therefore major guidance. It’s impossible, obviously, to have in mind every student we have in our classrooms, and that’s the reason why working with a tool like Symbaloo’s Learning Path could help us to keep a strong differentiation and individuality in our students’ learning at the same time we keep a record of their progress to elaborate the proper feedback.
What is a Learning Path?
A learning path is a sequence of different contents and activities that allows our students to master a topic or a skill following small and differentiated steps. Well, it’s true, we are not inventing anything new, and obviously differentiation should be one of our biggest targets as teachers. The difference here is that we can do it online, and it’s self-correcting.
Why being online and self-correcting is so important? because technology and digital are fashionable, today? Because if it’s self-correcting we can save a lot of time? Obviously, no.
The school can’t be a thematic park where our students go to have fun, even if having fun could be important. And no: working in a format that could be more attractive for them, like an app or a digital environment doesn’t guarantee us to be more successful.
being online and self-correcting are, therefore, others:
- The students can work by themselves, at home, when they have free time and even wherever they want if they have a smartphone and have automatic feedback of what he know and master and what he needs to improve.
- It generates a lot of data that, conveniently analyzed by the teacher, could help us to keep on working in the student’s needs and also detect mistakes or weaknesses in our performance as teachers (if most of the students commit the same mistakes, probably it’s our fault and we should revise the way we are teaching that part of the topic)
Let’s imagine that our learning path is designed to improve our student’s map skills and the report generated by the software once the student finishes with the activities indicates us he’s struggling with contour lines, cause he has followed the long path in that area. With that information, we can also trace his progress and prepare extra materials when necessary, inform the parents and design a specific strategy. but there’s also another reason why we find the Learning Paths very useful: if, instead of having one or a few students struggling with a specific topic we detect that is a generalised problem and most of them are having difficulties, we could discover that probably it’s our fault and we should reconsider the way we were teaching that specific topic and find an alternative way. A powerful resource if we use it properly.
In further posts, we will explain with more detail how to elaborate a learning path