What is Blended Learning?
Blended learning is also known as the “flipped classroom” or “mixed learning”. It is a unique approach to education that combines instructor-led classroom lessons with online content.
The content is usually provided in the form of on-demand videos. The learners learn and review the content outside of the class.
The teachers can teach online or face-to-face, or both.
This unique method of learning has proven to be beneficial to both the students and teachers.
Benefits of Blended Learning
Blended Learning is Subjective. People learn at their own pace and different people learn differently.
Researchers Fleming and Mills created a popular model of learning styles called VARK:
- V- Visual (people learning by sight the best)
- A- Audio (people who learn by audio the best)
- R- Reading and Writing (people who learn by Reading and Writing)
- K- Kinesthetic (people who learn by physical use and practical demonstration).
Other researchers added another mode of learning:
- Logical- people use logic or reasoning to understand concepts
- Social- learning through social interaction
- Solitary- learning through self-study.
The styles and methods of learning are endless. Therefore, a blended learning solution needs to be in place. For visual learners, videos can be the medium of instruction and learning. For social learners, live classes or audiobooks would help them progress in the curriculum immensely.
Hands-on practice like applied learning projects will be the ideal learning model for both logical and kinesthetic learners.
It helps to improve comprehension. Students are more engaged in the classroom. Flipped classroom demands that students learn the theory remotely and practice it in class in the presence of the instructors.
It saves time and also helps the students practice self-learning and self-analysis. The in-person portion can then be fully dedicated to learning all the practical skills and aceing them.
Learners Have Agency over their pace of Learning
Students can control the pace of their learning.
Blended Learning allows students to study online. It encourages research and self-study. Any student can set their own routine and follow it to study.
This method allows every student to learn any concept in their own time.
It is vastly different from a traditional classroom environment where all kinds of students with different learning abilities are taught at the same time.
They can be set as per the fastest and the lowest leaner in the group. They can take pauses and seek additional help and resources if they want to.
Instructor’s Time is Valued and made Efficient Use of
Traditional classroom settings demand that the teachers stay beyond the school hours to manage tasks like handing out extra notes, uploading more materials to the classroom, hand-grading assignments, and more.
With blended learning, while teaching online, the teachers can schedule classes according to their daily routine. They can also use various online tools to assign automated tasks.
It will allow them to spend more time giving attention to the students. Pre-planning and assigning, and uploading the materials online ensures that in the classroom, online or in-person, their sole focus is on the students. It helps them to comprehend the materials to develop their skills.
Students are Independent
Blended learning is preparing students for the future. In blended learning, students learn from a multitude of real-life situations that will help them integrate it into life skills.
Skills like Research, Self-learning, computer literacy, and a sense of responsibility are set to help the students massively and prepare them for the future.