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At EduGrove, we have always utilised technology to enhance our lessons whenever we can. In fact, Virtual Classes (VC) isn’t something new to us! We have been conducting VC for the past couple of years with students who have migrated overseas but still wishes to continue having weekly Chinese lessons with us. We also conducted VC as additional lessons on top of the regular weekly physical classes at the centre for some students to supplement their learning. We understand that teaching language is still best done through live human interaction however, teaching through VC has its benefits too.
Here are some benefits of learning through VC:
1. A Safe and Comfortable Learning Space
Research has shown that learners absorb better when they are placed in a comfortable and familiar environment. Learning online also saves students travelling time used for commuting forth and back.
2. Increased participation and engagement
Studies have shown that students who are shy in nature often find the quieter environment of a virtual classroom more comfortable. Virtual classrooms allows students who may not be as comfortable with interacting in-person an opportunity to contribute. The softer settings of a virtual class serves as an environment that is more conducive for their learning and introverted students often find themselves speaking up more. Hence, introverted students find themselves on an equal footing with their extroverted peers and are more open to joining in on the discussions.
3. Asynchronous discussions
By the time a student formulates his/her thoughts and was ready to add to the conversation, the topic would have changed. In a virtual classroom, that’s never a problem. Since most of the classwork is asynchronous, online discussions aren’t cut off when the bell rings.
4. Soft-skills development
Are you an individual or a team player? In any situation, it is more important for a person to not only have the technical and theoretical knowledge, but also to be a soft-skilled person who is patient, empathetic, open-minded, dialogical, and someone who enjoys and understands the process of working with others as a team. All of these abilities can be developed through virtual learning.
5. Fun, Engaging, Interactive!
Attending a virtual classroom session is simple and fun! Students virtually meet and connect with their peers. The teaching methods in the virtual classroom are very diverse, ranging from videos, texts, papers, presentations, etc. As students have many choices in the virtual classroom, they can adapt their experience to their learning style.