Learning together: Blended learning at the Aga Khan School, Osh
Since reopening its doors on 07 December 2020, the Aga Khan School, Osh (AKS, Osh) has adopted a blended learning approach to better accommodate its students.
With this new approach, students and their families can choose between distance learning and in-person learning based on their needs and preferences. This change comes less than a year after the Kyrgyz Republic’s government-mandated closure of schools in March 2020 in response to COVID-19.
AKS, Osh teachers and leaders developed the blended model after consultation with representative stakeholder groups and have now modified their syllabi, teaching styles and resources to accommodate both avenues of learning.
Natalya Deryabkina, Head of the Sciences Department at AKS, Osh, believes the blended approach will ensure a high rate of participation and provide students with an engaging and interactive way of learning. “I teach biology classes and have some students connected from their homes and some students sitting in the classroom,” she said. “Classes are delivered in the Learning Resource Center (LRC), connecting all students and teachers through Google Meet to encourage synchronous learning, active engagement via questioning, and discussions through their mobile devices, and interaction with one another in the classroom.”
“The LRC staff provide teachers with technical support to combine online and offline teaching”, said Ludmila Rahimova, Head of the LRC at AKS, Osh. “The new realities with the pandemic helped the LRC staff to master new competencies in using educational technology and new teaching methods at AKS, Osh,” she said. “The main goal is to bring together all students so that they can collaborate no matter where they study – in the school or at home. Technology enables students to stay close to their friends who are studying from home.”
Prior to its reopening, a great deal of work was completed at AKS, Osh to create an even safer learning environment for staff and students. The school adopted strict health and safety measures to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 that adhered to the algorithm prescribed by the Ministry of Education and Science. The measures included an "entrance filter” where body temperature is measured and separate entrances and exits for each class.
Despite the new changes, students are delighted to be back at school. “The school has reopened after a long period of distance learning,” said Grade 5 student Ten Daria. “We are finally all here in our beloved school with our dearest teachers, friends and classmates, with the familiar, tasty smell of the school canteen that we were missing for a long time!”
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- Despite the new changes, students are delighted to be back at school. “We are finally all here in our beloved school with our dearest teachers, friends and classmates, with the familiar, tasty smell of the school canteen that we were missing for a long time!” said Grade 5 student Ten Daria.
- Prior to its reopening, a great deal of work was completed at AKS, Osh to create an even safer learning environment for staff and students. Health and safety measures included an "entrance filter” where body temperature is measured and staff and students use hand sanitiser before entering the building.
- Other health and safety measures include informative posters and reminders about the use of hand sanitiser.