Blended learning is the new buzz word in education. It is the hottest trend in course instruction and learning; quickly growing to challenge old world (traditional) classroom teaching methods.
In this hybrid education model, students receive part of their learning through online delivery of content and instruction. While still attending a conventional school; face-to-face classroom methods are combined with learning activities and outcomes, performed on the computer.
These integrated online activities are executed in the classroom in a planned and valuable manner to ensure maximum learning. Singapore-based Knowledge Platform brings the Blended Learning Model to Pakistan.
The noble initiative specializes in education technology, content creation and community development. Using its next generation adaptive platform, known as the ‘Ultrabot’, the company blends online and offline learning and uses data to deliver specialized content to children. The platform’s ‘Ultrabot’ empowers teachers as well, by providing detailed insights into student progress and activities, teacher-to-teacher discussions on educational topics, teaching tips and tricks and resource recommendations. Furthermore, the company aims to foster community engagement among teachers and students on a global scale, having already developed 1,800 courses in over 30 languages for both the corporate and education sector.
Knowledge Platform’s aim is to bring interactive content that applies to the federal curriculum and blended learning techniques to government schools across Pakistan. As such, they want to empower teachers by training them in the technology and supporting both them and their students with a community of educators. In order to prepare 9th grade Pakistani students for their board examinations and provide free educational content during the summer, Knowledge Platform recently launched Pakistan’s first online learning challenge; LEARN SMART PAKISTAN (LSP).
The challenge gave students the opportunity to practice their math skills, engage with their peers and teachers all over the country, and access more educational content than ever before. Teachers also participated in the LSP challenge by providing assistance to students on specific math topics, offering teaching support and holding online office hours.
For the competition ending on August 15th; participating students and teachers come from 22 different schools across Pakistan including but not limited to Islamabad, Lahore and Jhelum. It is also exciting to note that 70% of the students are female with all students having access to more than 200 video lectures covering 9th grade Math curriculum, over 160 math drills and several educational games in order to provide a thorough, well-rounded educational experience.
A ‘Meet Your Teacher’ campaign will also be running during the course of the challenge. Every week the profiles of one or two teachers will be published on social media that are participating in the program in order to help personalize the experience through the online campaign. Teachers provide information on their background as well as testimonials on why they love teaching.
Currently, the challenge is limited to 9th grade students as it is in line with recent pilot programs that were run in Islamabad and specific to 9th grade math. However, the company is currently working on developing more content and will be making available 9th grade English soon.
So what do you think? Is this the future of education? Could this actually improve learning outcomes in Pakistan?
Well, according to Gul Meena, a student from Islamabad, “Along with assessments, I have also played learning games for 9th Grade Mathematics. I am just reaching to ‘Fish Eat Fish’ game for Algebra. It is amazing to see that Knowledge Platform has not only prepared assessments but also learning games for students to help them understand, practice and improve the concepts effectively. In my opinion, it is the best way of teaching… and learning!”