Due to the Covid-19 pandemic it was announced that as of the 11th of January 2021, schools would not be returning, and children would be receiving lessons online. This created several challenges for teachers as well as the children and their families. Younger children’s engagement was dependent on their parental involvement to raise attainment and ensure progress in the pupil’s learning (O’Sullivan, 2020).
Throughout home learning, a daily grid was created which consisted of Literacy, Numeracy and other curricular areas. Initially, the class used Microsoft teams for online learning and the engagement was reasonable. With the introduction of Seesaw three weeks into online learning, an increase in engagement was observed. In order, to further boost engagement and build on children’s motivation and mindset it was decided that an enquiry examining the impact of daily challenges as part of online learning would be valuable.
By presenting pupils with challenges, I hoped to enrich the curriculum by extending on what they already knew. The challenges were planned and developed to offer children an appropriately challenging task which also took into consideration the wide range of abilities and needs within the class. By considering Lev Vygotsky’s concept of Zone of Proximal Development (ZPD), to scaffold the challenge, activities were chosen carefully and then modelled by myself on a video. To support the children further through the ZPD with home learning, parents may have been required to support the child with some aspects of the challenges. To promote higher order thinking skills and enhance our online class ethos, I will remind children of experiences we previously had in the classroom and how the process they used could be applied in order to succeed in the challenge.
As well as improving engagement, I have considered the positive impact of completing challenges on a child’s wellbeing whilst improving self-esteem and confidence. During the challenge period for the enquiry, children will receive praise for trying their best, further developing a positive attitude and growth mindset. This will be promoted throughout the enquiry. Dweck, states that “no matter what your ability is, effort is what ignites that ability and turns it into accomplishment.”
By implementing a daily challenge, I will critically analyse their effectiveness on motivation and engagement in terms of online learning.
The aim of this enquiry was to evaluate the impact daily challenges has on online engagement during remote learning.