In this post, Dr Prue Miles shares useful tips and resources for parents who are supporting their child’s learning at home, during the COVID-19 disruption.
Children and young people need to be engaged in their learning and while teachers usually find videos, quizzes, and resources online for their classes, now parents might also need to do so.
- Have a go and look online – ask your child to help you
- Short videos are excellent or even better are those resources which also encourage participation by your child
- Encourage your young person to create their own screen content (this does not have to be shared globally. An audience of family and friends is great)
- Look at how your child can work with their classmates online
Online content for learning at home
The first place to start looking – SBSLearn
Go to SBSLearn. You can actually just click on the blue writing and you are there. This site is mainly for secondary school students and teachers. Teachers and students can collaborate on this site. It is free as it is produced by an Australian public broadcaster. There are short, relevant cut down program video clips from TV – go to SBSLearn Classroom Resources.
An example from SBSLearn
The Boat is an award winning SBS created interactive graphic novel told from a refugee’s perspective. SBS adapted the Nam Le short story into an innovative multiplatform work. You can take your children on an engaging ‘interactive journey’ with interesting resources which include twitter fiction, blackout poetry, and digital storytelling. Go to The Boat.
Another example is Always Was Always Will Be.
Go to #AlwaysWasAlwaysWillBe . This section of the SBSLearn site provides content created by NITV our National Indigenous broadcaster. There are many learning opportunities here aligned to the Australian Curriculum Cross Curriculum Priorities as well as subject specific content ideas. For younger children there is JarJums. This section of NITV’s site includes the episodes from all of NITV’s kids TV shows, including their early years kids’ animation Little J and Big Cuz, using young Indigenous characters, this work shares Aboriginal language, story and culture.
The second place to look is ABC and BBC broadcasting sites
Go to ABC Education and BBC Bitesize. These sites can enable your child to interact with you, or teachers or each other while learning. All these resources are aligned to Australian Curriculum learning areas. An example is The Australian Dream which includes short video clips and resources exploring five themes about Adam Goodes, Cultural Identity, History and Truths, Racism and Resilience and Reconciliation. Go to The Australian Dream.
Other ABC examples include learning ideas about COVID-19:
A third place to look is online sites by galleries, museums and orchestras
A fourth place to look for sites are those which allow your children to engage and create themselves, especially, encouraging their out of school interests.
Below are some activity ideas that you could work with your children to create:
- A Tik Tok style dance or a Youtube fitness video (see the U.K’s national P.E teacher Jo Wicks who is now donating all advertising income to the UK’s National Health Service)
- A Minecraft world of the significant activities you are missing. See how these students created a virtual graduation through Minecraft
- A discord audio conversation narrating at home events
- A Face Time group chat about a subject area challenge
- A collaborative, virtual GarageBand music ensemble or festival
- A Q & A style podcast about a current issue
Finally, look for sites to connect your children to their friends and classmates to learn
You may be able to use video conferencing platforms such as Zoom, Skype or Microsoft Teams. Or you can use email or text or face-time or pre-record your own videos and share on a school website, intranet platform or your school YouTube Channel – see Sydney based Teacher Eddie Woo’s ‘Woo Tube’ for inspiration.
COVID-19 now requires many teachers, parents and students to find innovative ways to engage young people with current and popular culture screen content. This article provides some ideas for finding online content that encourages cross cultural learning and creation. QUT’s Centre for Inclusive Education (C4IE) would love to hear your suggestions for innovative online learning via twitter using #LearningAtHome
For more information on supporting teachers during COVID-19 keep in touch with our QUT C4IE blog. See QUT’s Associate Professor Jill’s Willis recent blog post on How assessment and learning can be fair in a time of COVID-19 disruption.
Dr Prue Miles is a Senior Lecturer in the Education Faculty, School of Teacher Education and Leadership at Queensland University of Technology (QUT). She is a member of the Centre for Inclusive Education – Engagement and Learning research group. Her research focuses on digital pedagogies, authentic learning and teaching, education partnerships, innovative curriculum design, online learning and teaching resources, communities of practice and professional learning for teachers. Prue completed her PhD with QUT’s Digital Media Research Centre which produces world-leading research for a creative, inclusive and fair digital media environment.