Online learning during the Covid-19 global pandemic has proven challenging for everyone involved. Teachers and students have had to adapt to an ever-changing learning environment. In the classroom, pupils can find it hard to focus during lessons, this has been magnified during the current pandemic and has been a real concern for teaching practitioners. The disruption to the “normal” school routine has raised many different challenges including pupil engagement with learning. In a conventional classroom setting, teachers can visually inspect the work that is being generated during the class and can talk to individuals who may not be engaging well in a private manner. Online learning has made this task very difficult, and teachers have had to rely on the relationships built with and the support systems at home of the young people in their classes.
The curriculum for excellence set out by the Scottish government focuses on the importance of the experiences and outcomes for learners. The documents, to date, highlight the importance of providing ‘engaging, enterprising and active learning approaches in a variety of contexts’ (Scottish Government, 2008). Online learning provided an added challenge of not being able to deliver lessons in a physical classroom and emphasised the importance to monitor the engagement of pupils with material.
The learning has provided a unique opportunity to learning practitioners where they can investigate different online learning techniques. Ensuring pupils still have a voice during this time is essential for maintain good teacher-pupil relationships. Having good working relationships is vital for many different aspects of learning and teaching but it can have a significant impact on the engagement of pupils (Marsh, 2012). Ensuring there was an opportunity to listen to pupils’ opinions was an important aspect of this enquiry.
The aim of this enquiry was to investigate how live lessons can impact the level of pupil engagement with online learning.