What is the purpose of education?
Instinctively, many things might arise – better grades, better prospects, better jobs, better future. But, the true purpose of education is to keep curiosity alive – a key ingredient to the success of any learning process.
The pandemic caught educators and parents off-guard, and the drastic move from face-to-face learning to online learning presented a veritable challenge. Concerns that seemed like passing thoughts earlier suddenly became burning questions:
- How to keep a child from getting distracted during an online class?
- How will the lack of an active interaction affect my child?
- How can I keep my child interested in the learning process itself -online learning or otherwise?
- How can I foster social connections within the online learning experience?
- How can I still keep the sense of community alive for my child?
- How can I transfer the core objectives of education to an online platform without diluting it?
While the plunge into remote learning created a sense of urgency to address all these concerns, giving rise to a slew of EdTech solutions, one core gap still remained.
How can children be led into inquiry-based learning?
In so far as the education system in India goes, inquiry-based learning, or a fully hands-on learning approach was only the realm of alternate schools, due to the emphasis on a very academic-focused curriculum in most of India’s schools. Any parent would agree that the alternative school experience can come at a prohibitive cost restricting it only to a few elite.
How can such a learning experience be democratized, while addressing the additional challenge of online learning?
Singapore-based Neobael Education Technology company provides an online learning platform that provides a balance between providing an inquiry-based, child-focused curriculum – all the while keeping the child thoroughly engaged in the online learning process.
Founded during the pandemic year 2020 by former United World College of Southeast Asia (UWCSEA) employees Aradhana Iyer-Vohra and Elaine Chew, Neobael was born out of a need to create a collaborative, hands-on learning experience led by live trainers that enable STEAM(science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics) learning.
Two mothers from the Kidskintha community tried out Neobael’s online earning module. Neobael provides 3-hour and 1-hour modules for children in primary school, with plans to cater to older grades soon.
Our kids participated in the “What does a Habitat Sound Like?” session.
We did face a few challenges to get through the slot booking for the online learning module itself but once registered, the experience was fairly smooth.
Here is the gist of our experience with the session.
Incorporates a global curriculum
Neobael is the first learning platform to provide inquiry-led learning modules that are completely aligned with the Singapore Ministry of Education syllabus and the UK National Curriculum for Key Stages 1 and 2.
Why is this significant?
Singapore is one of the countries known for hovering at the top of international leagues tables that measure children’s ability in reading, math, and science for the last decade. The curriculum is focused on being fit-for-purpose and pragmatic, drawing on a range of pedagogical traditions. The consistent high achievement of students here has led to much hand-wringing in other parts of the world.
Neobael’s modules are designed in alignment with this curriculum- which means that any Neobael learning model are the perfect supplementary learning material for students learning from an academic-focus approach.
Skyrockets student engagement rates
At the outset, the session “What does a Habitat Sound Like?” looks like a science cum geography class- which it is. But, a learning experience has to be designed with the fact in mind that students have very varied interests. Some are interested in math, while science might captivate some others, while others need to see tangible from the abstract. Neobael’s module incorporated a coding session to go with the lesson on habitat and science. Students learn first-hand to develop thinking that “crosses over” and skyrockets student engagement rates.
Measure learning outcomes
Neobael’s lesson plans incorporate varied delivery methods, durations, and timings on various topics. A typical classroom makes it difficult to personalize learning, and the situation only seems to be exacerbated by the online learning scenario. Home-based learning is not particularly suited to personalized learning, but Neobael’s modules help parents measure learning outcomes.
The trial module came with a worksheet for students to work through the session.
While personalization is limited even in physical classrooms with a teacher handling 28-30 kids, it can get exacerbated in remote classes. Neobael’s module organization teaches students to organize all the new information and learn to think in new ways- the perfect ground for learning that sticks. Each module is designed and delivered live by experienced teachers.
Creates a global online learning pod
Among the 21st century skills is the skill of communication. The need to understand cultures beyond your own. To look beyond borders. And while it is unthinkable in the times of a pandemic to mingle with people next door, leave alone from other geographies – Neobael builds a truly global student community by organizing their student pods from many different nations and cultures. It is like reliving the good old days of penpals from places that we recognized only on maps, but a Neobael session can bridge the borders by helping students put faces to names. And names to cultures and traditions beyond their circles.
Book your Neobael trial session HERE.
This post was sponsored by NEOBAEL. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Kidskintha and our parents.