Online learning is missing something important. If you have been stuck at home with your child, you will know what that important component is. That part is the lack of a teacher.
A.I. and Teachers
For a while now Artificial Intelligence was touted as the solution to our labour problems. Artificial Intelligence was claimed by some to even one day replace teachers. However, that day may not come as soon as we hope. Why?
That's because the problem is a combination of both technology and the learner. To understand this, here's an analogy.
The Love For Starbucks
I'm sure most of us know what Starbucks is. We go there for our daily dose of caffeine and to meet up with friends. But the main product that Starbucks is paddling is coffee. The thing is, how many of us who have been to Starbucks knows how to make a latte or brew our own coffee?
I started going to Starbucks and after they started raising their prices, I thought, how can I make my own cup of latte at a cheaper rate? I started researching and even talking to baristas about how to craft the perfect cup of coffee.
Hence, I believe that when we go to Starbucks, we either become a consumer or an explorer. A consumer is someone who just pays for their coffee without wanting to know how it is being made. An explorer is someone who has been inspired to find out more about that wonderful concoction that they are consuming.
Are our Students Consumers or Explorers?
Unfortunately, not many students I know of are explorers. It is not their fault. Years of being in the system has made them less able to question and more focused on exams. The discouragement of questions by many teachers has not helped either.
While there are some students who are very much explorers, they are not equipped with the skills to learn on their own. As such, while many schools are prescribing online learning activities, you will still need a teacher to guide the students.
Unfortunately, many online learning implementation methods only encompasses the delivery of online learning activities, not how a teacher should conduct online learning. With enough training and guidance, perhaps things will change? Only time will tell.