美国威力塔斯学校北京校区
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北京威力塔斯探讨远程教育:异步教学方式

来源:美国威力塔斯学校北京校区 时间:2021-07-12 11:33:02

  Greetings! My name is Scott Markley, the Classics Department Head at Veritas Prep School.

  大家好!我是威力塔斯经典教育学部主任Scott Markley老师。

  It is a blessing to be able to communicate with you in these challenging times. I wanted to take a moment to express my thankfulness for your continued support in your child’s academic career and explain the methodology behind Veritas’ decision to embrace the asynchronous teaching model afforded to us by systems such as Blackboard. It is my hope that, with this knowledge, you can help us continue to effectively teach your children while we wait for the health situation in China to subside.

  首先,我希望能够在这个艰难的时期,把我的祝福,通过这篇文章传递给您。我希望能借此机会,感谢所有的家长对孩子们学术成长的一如既往的支持。同时,也希望向您详细的介绍,在此特殊时期威力塔斯学校所选择提供的一种特别的教学方法:异步教学法,以及我们所使用的教学平台Blackboard。我衷心的希望,在您充分了解它之后,能与我们一起更好的教育孩子,我们也会与您一同陪伴他们。愿中国的疫情早日平息。


  You have been heard. The teachers at Veritas have heard the concerns you have with the online system. You are worried your child will not stay motivated to finish the classes without an instructor standing them up to answer one by one. You are worried that your child’s online education will be inferior to a classroom based one. You are worried that your child will fall behind in AP, SAT, or TOEFL skills and be unable to continue along the path they used to have. You are worried about how your child will learn, when your child will learn, and what your child will learn. Your worries are completely understandable and valid, and we as professional educators share all your concerns and take deep pride in finding solutions to all of these challenges.

  如您所了解, 美国威力塔斯学校北京校区 的每一位老师都在关注您对于网络教学系统的顾虑和问题。您会担忧在没有老师亲身监督的环境下,孩子们是否还能自觉的完成课程;您会担心在线教育效果不如课堂教育好;您会担心孩子们的标化考试的准备节奏会被打乱;您更会担心孩子们会如何学习、何时学习、他们能学到什么?您的担心是完全能够被理解、被重视的!因为,作为专业的教育工作者,我们也有着同样的担心与顾虑。为此,我们每位老师,都在孜孜不倦的寻求战胜这些困难的方法,并且以此为荣、尽心尽力。


  I wanted to begin with the reasoning behind the foreign teachers’ proposal for asynchronous teaching. “Asynchronous” classrooms are those classrooms where students access their education materials at their own time and pace without the need for teacher observation or presence(But we certainly will set aside office hours for live instruction and interaction with your child. And there are many uploaded lecture videos). At first thought it may be assumed this decision was made because of the time gap between teachers and students. With teachers in at least 4 different time zones, some as many as 13 hours apart, scheduling does become a bit of an issue. However, with competent and skilled administration, this scheduling is not the problem. Asynchronous teaching was chosen for three basic reasons that, I believe, make it superior to “synchronous” or live instruction.

  我希望和您分享一下外教老师们倡议使用异步教育的考虑。“异步”课堂是指学生在不需要教师出席和当面监督的情况下,利用自己的时间接入教育资源进行学习的一种特殊的学习模式(当然我们会有专门的线上辅导和互动时间,以及充分的视频内容)。或许多数人认为我们选择这种教学模式的最大的原因是老师与学生之间的时差。诚然,老师们身处至少4个时区,甚至最大的时差跨度为13个小时,确实会让排课变得困难,但是,对学校的管理能力和老师们的工作能力而言,这根本不是什么大问题。使用异步教育,实际上是我们深思熟虑后的选择,我认为相比在线直播或同步教育而言,它也具有显著优势,这背后有三个非常重要的基本原因。


  1.Technology. Believe it or not, Asynchronous classes provide an infrastructure which accounts for every student’s technological situation. If a student or teacher has slow or bad internet they cannot do a Synchronous class. A teacher cannot facilitate a student with a non-academic need while focusing on a video screen and presenting slides. Asynchronous teaching, and Blackboard especially, allow for students to access their information at any internet speed, at any time, and in an organized fashion. Students cannot lose or misplace a piece of information, as often happens in Wechat, and they cannot claim to have forgotten a due date because of the Blackboard reminder system. They can collaborate, discuss, and work effectively using Blackboard once they’ve learned it. Most importantly, having every student use a single online platform cuts down on the amount of unacademic learning they need to do. There is no switching between apps, switching between wechat message groups where things move quickly, or remembering multiple log ins. One platform makes it easier for your child to focus on what is important: their academics.

  第一是技术上,不管我们相信与否,从技术可行性的角度上讲,异步教育课堂提供的是一个适合所有学生的网络学习平台。周所周知,如果学生或者老师的网络速度太慢,就无法支持同步教育。而一个老师如果只专注于对着屏幕的幻灯片展示,就无法帮助到一个学习能力薄弱的学生。但是异步教育,特别是Blackboard平台,则能够帮助学生们可以在任何时间、任何网络环境下,依照老师做好的安排,来获取学习内容。学生们不会错过、或者搞混任何一条信息,完全不像使用微信那样,学生们也不能找理由抱怨他们忘记了作业的截止日期,因为Blackboard有自动系统提醒功能。在学会使用这一平台后,他们就能够合作、讨论、并且有效的完成学习任务。最重要的是,所有同学只需要使用这一种平台学习,有效的节省他们花在学习之外的时间,比如,他们不用在不同的软件应用、不同的微信群间来回切换,而且微信消息转瞬即逝、容易错过重要信息,学生也不用记住多个软件的登录账号。这一平台使您的孩子能够更容易的只专注于一件重要的事:他们的学习。


  2.Experience. Your child needs to learn how to succeed in asynchronous online classes if they wish to succeed in the American educational system. 75% of American Universities and 50% of American High Schools use Blackboard for online classes. 1/3 of all students in America take at least one online course in college, with this number growing every year. Using Blackboard, or any asynchronous teaching platform, will let your child learn how to use the program in a safe environment before having to do so during a high stakes course.

  第二是经历,如果您希望孩子在美式教育下取得成功,那么他则需要先学会如何成功的适应异步网络课堂的学习。因为,美国75%的大学以及50%的高中都在广泛采用Blackboard作为网络授课平台(见文献1)。三分之一的美国学生都会在大学里学习至少一门网络课程,而且这一数字在逐年递增(见文献2)。使用Blackboard,或者其他异步教学平台,将让我们的孩子在不得不面对大量的此类课程之前就能提前做好准备,在这个安全的环境下先掌握它。

  1.“Education Giant Blackboard Buys MyEdu To Help Refresh Its Brand And Reanimate Its User Experience TechCrunch.” Accessed February 17, 2020.

  2.“New Data: Online Enrollments Grow, and Share of Overall Enrollment Grows Faster.” Accessed February 17, 2020.


  3.Differentiation. Asynchronous classes are best for Veritas’ at-risk and special needs students. Asynchronous classes allow gifted students to finish their work quickly and allows us to tailor harder assignments for them to do afterwards. These classes allow students with poor English to listen to and read items multiple times, at their own pace, and not have to worry about others pressuring them to move on. Asynchronous teaching, and Blackboard, allow us to tailor our lessons to your student individually. They let us talk in private to your child about their challenges and help them on their own time. Even now we are providing direct, detailed feedback to students that we wouldn’t be able to do in a synchronous classroom.

  第三点是个性化教育。异步教学课堂既适合威力塔斯学习基础薄弱的孩子又兼顾成绩卓越的学生。异步教育课堂允许成绩卓越的学生更快的完成学习任务,也允许老师来量身设计更有难度的作业给“没吃饱”的他们。异步课堂可以让那些英文基础薄弱的孩子有机会重复的去听、去读这些学习内容,节奏完全由自己掌握,不用担心来自他人的压力。异步教学和Blackboard给老师们提供了很好的差异化教学的机会,它让我们可以切身了解到不同孩子所面临的学习困难,并且帮助他们学会用自己的时间去解决问题。而且,老师甚至可以提供更直接、更细致的反馈给每个孩子,这是我们在同步课堂中所无法做到的。


  It would be unwise, however, not to address two major concerns you have as parents.

  另外,作为一个明智的家长,您需要去解决两个孩子在远程学习时会遇到的、重要的问题。


  1.Motivation. While they are not being watched, how can a student be expected to do their work? This is a real issue, but not one that Synchronous teaching would be much better at overseeing. Yes, synchronous classes force your child to sit and focus on one subject, but as teachers we cannot see what is on their screen, we cannot see what they are holding, we cannot police what they are doing or thinking/learning. Self-motivation and self-discipline will be necessary whether we were doing live or asynchronous teaching. Blackboard does help with motivation as it gives the student specific, clear goals for the week. Once students know that they are done with class when they finish the assignments, not after a set time limit, many are encouraged to work. Also, in an asynchronous class you may access your child’s work. You may use their login to see their classes and see when things are due(It is definitely your legal right to ask and share the platform account with your child). Blackboard gives you another way in which to hold your child accountable. 

  第一,孩子的学习积极性。当没有人盯着的时候,孩子们会自觉的学习吗?这是一个非常现实的话题,但是没有任何的同步教课方式能够在监督上做得更好。诚然,同步学习会强制您的孩子坐下来学习一个科目,但是作为老师,我们仍然无法看到他们的屏幕,我们不知道他们手里会拿着什么,我们更无法审查他们在做什么,或者在想什么、在学什么。因此,远程教育之下,孩子们的自我激励和自我约束才是必须的,无论是用同步教育还是异步教育。Blackboard这个平台可以帮助学生有动机的学习,因为老师可以通过它给学生每周设定具体的、清晰的学习目标。如果同学们在任务时限结束前就完成了课上作业,他们会感到备受鼓舞。而且,在异步教育课上您可以看到学生的作业,您也可以使用他们的帐户(这不是隐私,家长完全有权利共享学生的学习平台账号)来查阅他们的课程,并且看到相关的作业提交时间。Blackboard为您带来的是另一种了解孩子学习状况的方式。


  2.Confusion. There are going to be times when your child is confused with an assignment. There are going to be times where they don’t understand what to do next. There are going to be times where the lesson is not clear enough and they hit a wall in their learning. How will they learn asynchronously if the teacher is not around to help? Asynchronous does not mean they are not in contact with their teachers. It means that they do the work on their own time. To assist your child in their studies, we teachers have all set aside office hours where your child may text, call, or webcam with us for live instruction. The school will be notifying you about teacher’s office hours in the coming days so that you can hold your child accountable for communicating with us during these times. We are here, with professionalism, and we won’t let your child be alone in these trying times.

  第二,孩子的迷茫。孩子确实会遇到不清楚作业要求的时候、会遇到不理解下一步该做什么的时候,他们也会遇到因为课程讲解不够清楚而在学习上碰壁的时候。那么他们应该如何在老师不在身边的异步教育课堂上取得帮助呢?异步教育不意味着老师与孩子完全没有联系,它只是要求学生使用自己的时间来学习而已。为了帮助孩子们,老师们已经安排好了固定的在线工作时间,来和孩子们通过信息、电话、视频会议等多种方式沟通,给予他们即时的在线指导。学校将会告知您具体的时间安排,当然,您也可以在这个时候与我们沟通、去了解您的孩子。我们会在这里尽心尽力的陪伴您的孩子,与您和他们一同度过这个艰难的时期。


  After the first day of online classes we have learned many of these problems and have dedicated ourselves to solving them. There will be a list of “pros” and “cons” for every educational method. There will be concerns about what is best for your child. Your concerns are our concerns. Your child’s success is our success as teachers, and we would never attempt to use a method or platform that was bad for their growth. We ask in this time that you understand that this is a learning process for everyone, that this is a challenging time for everyone, and that we are doing all we can to ensure a positive educational environment for your child. Blackboard and asynchronous teaching require your child to learn a new system, but once they have learned the basics it will open a whole new world of opportunities and experiences. And it will help prepare them to continue embracing American education. Encourage them to learn the system, and to push through challenges, as we keep trying to facilitate classes that are worth learning the system for.

  在第一天网络课程上线后,我们从遇到的问题当中学到了很多,也非常努力的去解决这些问题。在每一种教学方法背后都有着它的优点与缺点,我们因此会去思考,怎样才是对孩子们最好的选择。请您相信,您所关心的,也正是我们所关心的,同样,孩子们的成功,才会是老师们的成功。我们永远都不会为孩子们选择无益于他们成长的教学方法或平台。同时,我们也希望能够得到您的理解,每个人的学习成长都需要过程、都会伴随着挑战,但我们一定会不遗余力的去为孩子们创造一个积极的教育环境。使用Blackboard与异步教学,需要孩子们去学习这个新的系统,但是一旦上手,它将会为孩子们打开一个崭新的世界、为他们带来崭新的机遇与经历,它将会帮助您的孩子更好的适应美式教育。在此,我们也会尽一切努力,帮助和鼓励他们去学习这个系统,帮助他们战胜困难与挑战,确保他们能够从这样的课堂和系统中学有所值。

  Regards,

  真挚地

  Scott Markley

  Classics Department Head

  经典教育学部主任

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