Post peak pandemic, ISB has returned to school in various forms across the three campuses with the introduction of the Blended Learning Program. The BLP is a way for students to come back to face-to-face learning without coming in contact with too many people. By implementing social distancing measures, a system involving alternate days in school has been put in place for the last two weeks and so far, so good.
While the system is slightly complex, it seems to have proved efficient and has gotten a considerable amount of good feedback since its enactment. From the outside looking in, BLP is difficult to understand with the grade split in 2 groups, the Red Dragons and the Black Dragons but with a handful of diagrams and explanations, it is doable!
In my experience, blended learning has been quite enjoyable because the teachers sympathise with the situation, the workload has been less than before and the school has a somewhat peaceful atmosphere during break and lunchtimes. The time at home has also been nice because most of the classes are asynchronous so we can do them in our own time and with others if we wish.
One student in Grade 10 said “It was actually quite nice having small class sizes. It was definitely strange at first and sad that we couldn’t see the other half of our grade, but it was a smart concept.” and I totally agree. Another student said “Being able to finally go back to school and actually physically see your classmates and teachers was really nice after months of just staring at them through a laptop screen,” which is true because it felt like we are actually learning through human interaction rather than Google Classroom and external resources.
Of course, we are very fortunate to be able to see each other and attend school once more before the summer holidays because that is not the case for the majority of countries around the world. Blended learning has proven to be successful and has been a nice way to end the school year after a chaotic interruption due to the pandemic. It has been a new experience that we as a community have been exploring together, and one we will remember for a long time to come!
Alia Esa, Grade 10