How are you engaging with students in exceptional conditions?

A few staff made it to our campus today; me being one of them! This is not the first time this year that snow has disrupted the routines of education, but have those routines changed as a result?

I have noted the level of activity in our VLE, which appears to be relatively high and comparable to any other weekday. However, I am uncertain of the activities that students may be following whilst unable to get into college. I suspect that most are collecting resources from Moodle (exercises, reference materials, etc) and following some associated task. How many though, are engaging in learning activities together, online?

Of course, when it snows, it’s pretty likely that students of any age will be outside having some fun. However, the policy of most organisations (including the one I work for) is that learners should remain engaged and continue the learning process. Whether this actually is the case is very difficult to say. With regular disruption to education over brief periods this year, we should now be well equipped to prepare learners for the different approach we all need to take to our learning routines. We should be confident that even when not on campus, flexible and creative approaches to learning can be adopted should any exceptional situation come about.

Are you, or any of your colleagues using VLE facilities and other learning tools to engage with learners online? Do you schedule online activities at the same time you would normally be teaching the group? Do you make yourself accessible online at specific times for students to contact you, and if so, by what means?

I don’t teach, but I am intrigued to know how you are ensuring continued engagement with your classes.