Essence of Interactive Learning
Learning in modern times is nothing like what it used to be ten to fifteen years ago. Teachers no longer walk inside the classroom and ask students to open so and so books and directly jump into the lessons. Rather, teachers' first job is to make students at ease and boost them up. Hence, as ice-breakers, during class activities and as plenary, teachers nowadays use teaching techniques following interactive learning.
Teaching and learning is no longer a one way process. It works both ways. Interactive learning is an applied approach to support students in becoming more involved and hold more substantial information. Interactive learning does not necessarily require technology. With or without any form of technology, interactive learning helps students to reinforce their cognitive skills along with problem solving and critical thinking abilities.
One of the main essences of interactive learning is that it creates collaborations in classrooms and teaches students how to harmonize among peers. In many countries, including some of the advanced schools in our country, traditional black and white boards have been replaced with interactive whiteboards which help the teachers and the students in the teaching and learning process. Students learn to share and present information straightforwardly and team up to enjoy working together and love learning together with classmates. Students can bond better through fun activities. Even without interactive boards, students can do different group works like solving puzzles, brain storming, and other pair and group works.
Furthermore, interactive learning makes students more independent. They have the responsibility to understand instructions and perform accordingly. For the purpose of learning, they have to learn how to make use of resources. Moreover, they can decide which way they want to advance and present their tasks that helps them build strong research skills, which again proves to be beneficial for their mental and psychological strengthening. In many researches and studies conducted on students and parents that interactive teaching helped children's learning more easy and interesting and helped to develop a work from home comfort, which is also advantageous for students and parents.
Interactive learning is a flexible and adaptive style of learning. It has the ability to bring out different skills and potentials in students. In courtesy of internet access, it enables students to maintain their own comfortable pace while learning and can also revise contents as and when it is needed to prove to be immensely helpful, especially for kids with special learning aptitudes. It is a much enjoyable and engaging form of learning. Evidences show that most schools that have used interactive teaching have reported it to enhance enthusiasm and commitment among pupils in their classrooms. Students are sure to find it more attractive by make things a little competitive. It helps students learn through interactive games and also add levels of achievement. Students can also practice many of these tasks and activities at home with the support of YouTube and other mobile applications; but it must be under the supervision and monitoring of the parents so that in the motion of learning, they do not get exposed to inappropriate content.
Amidst various types of interactive learning, the some of the most used modes are interactive exercises like which involves two way interaction between students and teachers through conversations and in-class assignments. In a more advanced set-up, uploading contents online and allows students to work on it on their motor skills and analytical abilities in a more digitized manner. Also, flipped classes is technique used by many teachers where students are informed about that the class on the following day will be about so that the students can come with basic preparation from home and implement it in class with their teachers and peers through interactive class works. A flipped classroom benefits to make better use of learning times of different learners' profiles in a class, especially with regards to language education, where acquiring knowledge tends to not be as uniform. This is so because along with formal education, the distinct abilities of each student depend on other features such as what they have read, their travels, if they watch movies or TV series in the original language, etc.
As a modern day middle school teacher, I find interactive teaching and learning to be highly beneficial for the overall development of the students while augmenting their own potentials and calibre. However, in Bangladesh this is yet to be implemented at a broader scale in government schools and colleges. In many educational institutions computers and internet access are available but the teaching techniques are not in practice. Therefore, the teachers need vigorous training. Many training programmes and elaborative instructions on variety of teaching techniques are available on the internet. Thus, it may be said that interactive learning not only opens new horizon for students but also new doors for the teachers.
Fahmida Mehreen is a
young aspiring writer.