What impact does shortening task length have on the level of pupil engagement during remote learning?
In the wake of the Covid-19 Pandemic, the delivery of face-to-face education was deemed to be unsafe, schools across Scotland closed and the transition towards remote learning had begun. In December 2020, The First Minster announced that the majority of pupils would move to remote learning for at least a month which was later extended until the safety of pupils in schools could be guaranteed (Education Scotland, 2020). “Remote learning is learning that is directed by practitioners and undertaken by children and young people who are not physically with the practitioner while instruction is taking place.” (Education Scotland, 2020, p.2). The National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER) found that on average, teachers are in contact with 60% of their pupils. However, evidence has highlighted that less than half of pupils (42%) handed in their last piece of work (Lucas, Nelson & Sims, 2020). Vonderwell and Zachariah (2005) established that pupils who were presented with an overload of reading and learning tasks became overwhelmed and engagement decreased. In Physical Education (PE), a constructivist approach allows written tasks to correspond with physical activity (PA) tasks to maximise cognitive and physical engagement (Ennis, 2013).
The aim of this enquiry is to determine whether or not shortening the task of asynchronous learning tasks has an impact on pupil engagement during remote learning.