Keep your concepts warm this summer with Learnhive!

By Arindam Nag,

Summer vacation is that time of the year when extra-curricular activities are in full swing. We at Learnhive encourage all to use this time to focus on hobbies and sports that may have taken a back seat, especially over the last couple of months of academic rigour. Take that art class or music lesson or enrol in your favourite sport camp.

 

But summer is also the time when we tend to forget some of the important concepts we may have learnt in Math and Science. This is where Learnhive can help you with the basic nourishment you need to keep your Math and Science brains sharp and be ready for the new academic year.

Each week we will send you a topic each in Math and Science that you need to revise and/or get introduced to a new topic for your upcoming year. All you have to do is 3 simple steps:

Step 1: You log in to Learnhive with your account

Step 2: View the video related to the topic, and play some games that are listed

Step 3: Take some fun practice exercises on the topic you just read or watched video on.

All it will take is an hour of your time per week. And you can do it at any time, anywhere on your PC or phone or even if you’re on a vacation, as per your convenience. And best of all it costs nothing! Also, you will earn points each time you view a video or take an exercise. These points will add towards the Learnhive Summer Contest.

You will need a Learnhive account to access this program. If you do not have one, sign up here for your account. We will send you a calendar listing the various topics being covered this summer to your email address. This program is presently targeted for students moving to Grades 5 – 10 in the coming academic year.

About the Author:

Arindam Nag is a  Founder and Director at Learnhive; he has over 17 years experience in information technology. He worked for over 13 years at one of the world’s leading investment banks, Goldman Sachs in various engineering and technology leadership roles. He has a Masters in Computer Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin. He is a recipient of National Talent Search Scholarship. He is a staunch believer in using technology to bridge the gap in the educational divide that exists not just in India but the world over.

About Learnhive: 

Learnhive is a leading provider of technology based learning solutions for K-12 students, parents, and tutors. Our goal is to make curriculum based learning more effective and fun. We specialize in providing after school learning solutions for students and parents. Our flagship product, Personal Concept Tutor™ gives students the flexibility to learn concepts at their own pace using a wide variety of materials and resources suited for their individual needs. Our technology is compatible with multiple device formats such as desktops, laptops, tablets and smart phones to make learning more fun, interactive and available to students anywhere and at any time. Signup for free to access the learning materials (lessons and exercises).

Are you giving enough blended learning for your child?

By Jenna Murdoch,

Most of the parents feel that in spite of sending their child to tuition and school, the classroom learning has not made much of an impact on the child. The reason could be that the child has not understood the concepts or that they maybe exceptionally talented that they are bored of learning the concepts. This is due to being exposed to only classroom learning and not practical knowledge. Find out what blending learning is all about and how it will have a positive impact on your child’s learning.

Within the modern school system, students are arranged primarily by age rather than by ability. This originated with the industrial model of schools, where students were all trained in the same way to prepare them to take the place of another on the assembly line and are moved through the school years in lock step. Of course, we are no longer in the industrial age – we live in a knowledge economy where not everyone is expected to be on the same path, yet still, students are put in classrooms without full regard to where they stand on the learning spectrum.

Photo Credit: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/1109761

Pitfalls in levelled classrooms

In order to adapt to the new economy, many schools have attempted to address students of differing abilities by creating leveled classes and introducing opportunities for more advanced students such as Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate programs. Further, teachers have attempted to design more “modern” curricula that deviate from the traditional industrial model by using new in-class methods that encourage collaboration and project-based learning. However, even within these leveled classrooms, there is considerable variance in students’ level of comfort with coursework – instructors still have to appeal to the most common denominator in order to address the largest audience possible. As a result, students who have trouble keeping up may give up on understanding the material while students who are exceptionally talented in a certain subject may become bored or even discouraged.

Online education aids practice and preparation

In many subjects, online education may be a way for students who don’t fit into the common denominator to complement in-class instruction. Online education is a particularly effective complement to work in mathematics, since mathematical reasoning involves practice and objective problem solving. Students who are having a hard time keeping up with their classmates can do online practice problems until they have a better handle on the material or watch tutorials that take them step-by-step through the process of solving certain types of problems. Learners who are ahead of most of their peers can use online education as a way to solve more challenging problems that can give them a leg up in preparing for future coursework and can even help get them prepared for the level of mathematical reasoning that is expected of students applying to top universities.

Optimizing online learning platform

Though online instruction can be an excellent complement for classroom materials, many parents and students have a hard time deciding what features to look for when attempting to choose an online learning platform. Many online education providers have extremely limited materials or demonstrate the same generalized approach that drives students to online resources in the first place. In order to maximize the benefits of complementary online education, parents and students should look for platforms that have broad content and have adaptive resources that track a learner’s progress and generate additional materials based on the user’s demonstrated performance.

Blending in-class and online instruction

Blending in-class instruction with adaptive online complementary resources can allow students to move at their own pace and can empower them in the classroom.

About the Author:

Jenna Murdoch is a student at Barnard College of Columbia University in New York City. She is an instructional technologist who is interested in evolving learning models.

About Learnhive: 

Learnhive is a leading provider of technology based learning solutions for K-12 students, parents, and tutors. Our goal is to make curriculum based learning more effective and fun. We specialize in providing after school learning solutions for students and parents. Our flagship product, Personal Concept Tutor™ gives students the flexibility to learn concepts at their own pace using a wide variety of materials and resources suited for their individual needs. Our technology is compatible with multiple device formats such as desktops, laptops, tablets and smart phones to make learning more fun, interactive and available to students anywhere and at anytime. Signup for free to access the learning materials (lessons and exercises).

5 Useful Tips for Successful Learning

By Pallavi Rudraraju,

Have you been worried that your kid crams all night to get good marks in exams? Do you feel that your child doesn’t do well in studies and does not have the right habits of learning? Here are a few quick tips for better and faster learning that will help your child to retrieve better during examinations.

As a student, months away from receiving a high school diploma, I feel like I have just the right balance of youth; yet modern experience in the current education system to offer you and your child successful learning tips. It is best to begin walking your child through these study habits once they begin their education, but any time is a good time to start with teaching learning routines for a happy, motivated student.

Photo Credit: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/472030

1. Select a time period during the day in which your child will learn and complete homework. Making a routine schedule is ideal for setting a habit and maximizing your child’s focus.

-It might be best to ask your child which time of the day they’d like to learn, but also consider the ideal time for you to be able to help them while determining a set study period for your child.

-If you have more than one child, try to keep study times similar, but allow more or less time for each child depending on individual learning pace or level of education.

-It is not a good idea to set study time right after school or right before bed as sleepiness or excitement might not allow your child to focus to the fullest extent of their abilities.

2. The length of time your child needs to complete schoolwork varies from child to child, along with the level of coursework. So, if your child needs more time, snacks and breaks then they are helpful to keep your child happy and focused.

3. Allow your child to work alone on homework, but help whenever he or she asks for it. Make sure your child does not become frustrated.

4. Always be patient with your child- if you are getting frustrated, perhaps, your child simply doesn’t comprehend the way in which you are trying to explain.

5. If you find for any reason you are unable to give your child time or help in certain subjects, look for a peer or even professional tutor that can simplify the process for your child.

The key to setting good study habits is to follow them regularly at scheduled intervals and maintain the happiness of your child to make sure he or she is engaged. As each child’s course load is different due to age, level, and understanding; it might take your child varying amounts of time to finish work. Nevertheless, if you allow study time to be fun, relaxing, and stimulating; you can guarantee that your child will enjoy studying while getting the best results out of it!

About the Author:

Pallavi Rudraraju is a student of 12th grade (High school) in Vienna, Virginia. She has a passion for singing and dancing on top of avid reading and writing – much of her time is occupied by singing in her school choirs and dancing Bharatanatyam under the tutelage of her long-time guru. She hopes to become an author and an English teacher following graduation from college. Starting this fall session, she will be attending The College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia. Bringing awareness and joy to people throughout the world, through writing, is her lifelong goal.

About Learnhive: 

Learnhive is a leading provider of technology based learning solutions for K12 students, parents, and tutors. Our goal is to make curriculum based learning more effective and fun. We specialize in providing after school learning solutions for students and parents. Our flagship product, Personal Concept Tutor™ gives students the flexibility to learn concepts at their own pace using a wide variety of materials and resources suited for their individual needs. Our technology is compatible with multiple device formats such as desktops, laptops, tablets and smart phones to make learning more fun, interactive and available to students anywhere and at anytime. Signup for free to access the learning materials (lessons and exercises).

Wings of Success!

sampada.bidikar@learnhive.net

You may have heard about this story of a man and a cocoon that goes as follows:

A man once found a cocoon. He observed a small opening and was curious. He sat and watched the caterpillar for several hours as it struggled to force its body through the little hole. It was trying hard to emerge from the cocoon, going back and forth, stopping at times, and trying to find its way out. The man felt bad for the caterpillar, seeing it struggle.

The man decided to help the butterfly and with a pair of scissors he cut open the cocoon. The butterfly then emerged easily. But something was strange. The butterfly had a swollen body and shriveled wings. The man watched the butterfly, expecting it to take on its correct proportions. But nothing changed.

The butterfly stayed the same. It was never able to fly. In his kindness and haste the man did not realize that the butterfly’s struggle to get through the small opening of the cocoon is nature’s way of forcing fluids from the body of the butterfly into its wings so that it would be ready for flight. [1]

He did not understand that every step in the process is important. And if you skip one step, though you might seem to have reached your destination, the result might not really be the best.

To reach any goal, there are no shortcuts. Everyone has to go through the rigorous process and follow the path to reach their destination. Struggle is nature’s way of bringing out the best in us. That’s the law of nature.

We too should take our time, find our path, celebrate and enjoy every milestone along the way till we reach our destination.

Most of us know this philosophy, but how many of us really follow it? Unlike the man in the story, do we let our caterpillars come out of their cocoon on their own, by letting them go back and forth, have their own pace, making sure they accomplish every milestone, so that finally they can emerge as beautiful butterflies? Even if we want to, do our children have the leverage to do things their own way and at their own pace?

All children are naturally curious about things and passionate about learning. But somewhere down the line, in this bizarre game of learning, they get lost. During the game, they might stumble at a step or need more time than others to complete a step. Unfortunately, we do not always give them the opportunity to pause and think, or revisit a previous step, since we hurry them to catch up with others. So they tend to skip some important steps. They may reach the finish line but more often than not, the learning is incomplete or is lost. And that’s a heavy price to pay. Because as Albert Einstein rightly said “Education is what remains after one has forgotten everything he learned in school.”

Education today is operating on a factory model, where children are pushed through the system for a period of 12 years. The expected outcome is for them to be “educated” citizens, graduating with the exact same skill sets, so that they are eligible for higher education or for getting jobs [2] . But that is not how it really works, does it?

Through this system we might be able to achieve the quantitative goal of literate citizens, but what about the qualitative goal?

Today’s classrooms do not give our children the opportunity to study at their own pace, or in their own way with their preferable learning style. Nor is there enough time to revisit a concept which is either not understood or misunderstood. Willard R. Daggett (Ed.D, CEO of the International Center for Leadership in Education.) has accurately stated the reason for this as – “We have organized schools not by how kids learn; they have been organized by an easy way to teach.” [2]

There is a lot of research happening in the Learning Sciences to bridge this gap. Different sciences like psychology, computational sciencesociology, anthropology, child psychology and cognitive science contribute to the “Science of Learning”. There are many papers published on the best practices of teaching, different models and styles of learning, and much more.

And with the aid of technology, there is lot of scope for progress and an excellent opportunity to offer our children the right resources to learn and grow.

References:

[1] http://www.forwardsteps.com.au/docs/Struggling-Butterfly-Story.pdf

[2] http://dreamsofeducation.wordpress.com/

About the Author:

Sampada Bidikar (sampada.bidikar@learnhive.net) is the Team Lead – Content Development at Learnhive.

 About Learnhive: 

Learnhive is a leading provider of technology based learning solutions for K12 students, parents, and tutors. Our goal is to make curriculum based learning more effective and fun. We specialize in providing after school learning solutions for students and parents. Our flagship product, Personal Concept Tutor™ gives students the flexibility to learn concepts at their own pace using a wide variety of materials and resources suited for their individual needs. Our technology is compatible with multiple device formats such as desktops, laptops, tablets and smart phones to make learning more fun, interactive and available to students anywhere and at anytime. Signup for free to access the learning materials (lessons and exercises).