What is in the name of O.R.E.O?
Thai government has not ordered schools to be closed yet, but many international schools in town seem to anticipate school closures to be happening soon. Learning from our previous experience, in order to better support teachers, students and families, our Secondary School Academic Team (SSAT) recognizes the importance to provide online teaching and learning guidance and recommend tools that teachers and students are already familiar with. This is probably not the best time to introduce and experiment new web-based tools or apps.
I want to make the guidance as simple as possible for everyone, so I came up with the acronym, OREO, exactly as the cookies that kids love to eat. They are standing for:
- Objectives: Online learning should never be the case that teachers give students a lot of busy work to do. Identify clear learning objectives and learning outcomes can assure the quality of online learning. Just like what we will do in the classroom, students need to be prompted and encouraged to clarify and understand the learning outcomes before engaging with their learning.
- Responsibility: To ensure effective and productive online learning experience, responsibility is shared by all stakeholders. Teachers need to update the learning materials and tasks regularly and communicate clear instructions to be followed. It is helpful for students to create a daily online learning schedule. For younger students, they will benefit from getting guidance from their guardians and practice their time-management skills.
- Expectations: Asynchronous learning is provided and students are expected to participate and engage with online learning. They are expected to complete tasks and assignments with their highest level of effort. By the same token, teachers are also expected to provide their 'office hours' and let students know when they are available online to answer questions or clarify instructions. It is highly recommended that teachers set up a system, such as using Padlet or Flipgrid, for students to ask questions. We want to avoid answering endless emails from students. Another tip is to set up the task with specified length and requirements so that students can anticipate how long it will take them to complete the task. Instead of saying responding to the prompt orally, we can make it to a 2-minute response.
- Organization: Organizing and sequencing online learning helps to keep students on track and also help teachers collect formative learning evidences. We want to avoid sending students to visit multiple external links and they end up feeling confused or lost. All learning materials and tasks should be sequenced. I highly recommend using Formative, a web-based tool, to structure and record online learning. After setting up the lesson via the Formative website, teachers can generate a link and post this link in their learning platforms, such as ManageBac or Google Classroom. Last but not least, students and parents are reminded of organizing a dedicated learning space for encouraging productivity.
Note: a more elaborated OREO information for parents organized by Nadine Bailey (@intlNadine) can be found here.