5 Benefits of Blended Learning
Five advantages of incorporating blended learning into today's classroom
There’s no denying we live in a digital society, surrounded by constantly changing advances and innovation in technology.
Post-millennials, or members of Generation Z, are growing up in a technology-saturated world of personal computers, smart phones, social media, and the internet.
Education has developed to reflect the lived experience of today’s students, interweaving traditional teaching strategies with the latest technologies.
Known as blended learning, this adaptive instructional model offers diverse educational approaches that engage tech-savvy students.
Blended learning is used in classrooms across the country today.
Studies have shown blended learning can be an engaging and effective teaching approach for students from diverse backgrounds, including English learners and student with learning challenges who benefit from having material presented in a variety of modes.
As with all teaching methods, there are advantages and disadvantages to implementing a blended-learning model. Here are five advantages to incorporating blended learning in the classroom:
Blended Learning Advantages
Blended learning classes offer flexibility for teachers in how they present material and for students in the pace and variety of the learning approaches they experience.
Studies have shown that because blended learning incorporates multiple methods of instruction from an assortment of perspectives, it proves to have an effective learning outcome for most students involved.
By incorporating technology into classroom instruction, teachers are freed up to reach more students. Teachers can move within the stations or activities to interact with individual or small groups of students and check on progress. Data provided by educational technology programs also empowers teachers with insights on each student’s learning so they can more effectively address gaps.
Because most students today are surrounded by technology in their everyday life, they often engage more easily with material when technology is incorporated in instructional settings. Additionally, students become empowered as they expand their technological skills and competency with technology.
Because blended learning incorporates a variety of instructional approaches, learning activities can be tailored to address numerous learning styles. Additionally, high-quality digital educational tools allow teachers to measure each student’s individual learning level and provide activities and instruction that meet the child where they are to give them appropriate lesson material.
For all the advantages to blended learning, there are also some cons to consider.
Blended Learning Disadvantages
Dependence on technology
Schools must have the infrastructure, tools, and financial backing to support the technology required as a piece of a blended learning classroom. Additionally, any technology glitches or outages will short-circuit blended learning instruction plans.
Teacher time and training
Teachers must be trained in technology usage and be prepared to introduce and regulate all activities throughout the instructional period to effectively implement a blended learning environment. Although incorporating technology frees up some time for teachers, they still need to provide one-on-one instruction to individuals and small groups. Teachers also spend additional time reading, evaluating, and utilizing data from digital education programs to create individualized reteaching plans for students needing extra assistance to address gaps in learning.
Even with these obstacles, the benefits of blended learning outweigh the disadvantages.
With the necessary training and support, teachers can successfully implement an effective blending learning classroom that engages and benefits students of today.
By providing a variety of teaching approaches through blended learning that include a digital component reflective of today’s world, educators can help learners from all backgrounds reach their academic potential.