5 Tips to Achieve Virtual Classroom Distance Learning

Published: October 21, 2010

A virtual classroom environment – available to anyone with a PC and an Internet connection – makes learning more interesting and accessible, yet still familiar to students, especially when the teacher uses recognisable classroom elements.
What You’ll Need:
  • Jotter or notepad
  • Lesson plan
  • PC
  • Webcam
  • Printer
  • Scanner

  1. Design your virtual classroom interface
  2. Create the website learning environment, equipped to enable students to log in and interact in real time using multimedia e.g. webcams, blogs and messaging. You can, of course, use a ready-made VLE or our own Primary Learning Platform – Learnanywhere!
  3. Provide a lesson plan to guide the home learning over the Internet. The plan should include the reading resources required to undertake the lesson or hyperlinks to online resources. Include to do lists and milestones to structure the classroom projects and homework assignments. If teaching is delivered online, provide the necessary links.
  4. Allocate projects to students and use multimedia to provide the teaching, discuss assignments and communicate with lessons. Projects can be completed individually or in teams, just like a physical classroom environment.
  5. Invest in a learning platform or application that enables quizzes and tests to be provided (unless your VLE provides this already). Many VLEs provide self-marking multiple choice quizzes that save time and money. Alternatively, contact Webanywhere, and let us explain the solutions we can provide!

Counting Down to the Spending Review

Published: October 19, 2010

As school managers will be aware, the Department of Education has been asked to prepare plans for cuts of between 10% and 20%. This would come to between £5.71bn and £11.42bn.
While it is now widely expected that front-line schools budgets (those received from local authorities via the Dedicated Schools grant,or DSG) will be protected from the worst of the cuts, the full impact on school spending will require very careful reading of the detail.

Of particular interest is the impact on ICT investments within schools. The cuts inevitably carry some threats to the modernisation of the teaching and learning profession – some projects have already been scrapped, including education facilitator BECTA.
On the other hand, there may be opportunities for schools to save costs and increase efficiencies – particularly in areas such as cloud computing, open source and even the prospect of local authority collaboration to achieve savings through sharing resources and/or technology expertise.
Whatever the outcome of Wednesday’s announcement, many schools will be looking very hard at the small print before making planning decisions for their next budget year.