Kozhikode: A CBSE affiliated school here has set up an emergency learning management scheme for its students after the state shut down schools till March 31, due to the Corona scare.
Dayapuram Residential School is doing this through Cyber Square, the digital channel it had set up for initiating students from Class I to VIII to learning programming.
The state government decided to shut down schools came when exams were about to start. This not only meant students wouldn't be compelled to revise their portions and end up without any engagement with subjects for a long time.
So the school management decided to engage students through video material, give tests and projects online as well as eventually create live classroom interactions.
Ever since shut downs of schools in Kerala and and later in Delhi, there has been so much talk about e-learning but available social media options won't work with students till upper primary sections and most middle class schools can't afford sophisticated Learning Management Systems.
The biggest concern in any such project for Classes I to VIII is the time required for creating an online window between teachers and students through dedicated usernames and passwords and getting small children familiarised with such a platform.
N. P. Ashley, a Dayapuram volunteer, proposed that the Cyber Square, which works through a username and password for each student, could be used to the school's advantage.
The Cyber Square team, under Deepak, took up the challenge to integrate the features of the Learning Management System so that tests, revision lessons and videos could be integrated by teachers.
The class teachers, under the leadership of Principal M Jyothi, have been talking to parents to understand their concerns and the availability of laptops and smart phones.
Teacher training for the integration of videos and tests from different subjects into the system started soon.
A non-profit, volunteer-run school, Dayapuram School educates 202 orphan, destitute, socially and economically backward children out of its total of 2020 student population, many of whom have no smart phones let alone laptops. In such cases, the school decided to print out the materials and take it to such students.
As 70 per cent of the students are to access the online scheme through smart phones, and as typing on phones is cumbersome, the option is provided to write answers/projects, take photos and upload them in the system.
In additions to syllabus-oriented works, the management also plans to telecast speeches and share material on health and society-related issues with parents and students.