Lockdown and curfew took everyone by surprise in Sri Lanka. One day it was business as usual, the next, everyone was working in isolation. The initial panic and confusion will be etched in our minds for years to come. While many wrung their hands in worry, an intrepid few possessed the ingenuity to change with the times. LearnWare Academy is one such entity.
Being a tech-based company, LearnWare had the expertise to switch from physical to virtual teaching in record time. The team designed course content to cater to online sessions in a matter of two days after lockdown to support existing students.The lockdown created a hitherto unprecedented demand for online lessons among the general populace. This prompted LearnWare to accommodate new requests for enrollment. Many new students from around the island have used this opportunity to join the weekly and monthly online coding camps for an affordable investment. These camps, which are ongoing, continue to assist those who wish to pursue creative opportunities in their children’s education.
LearnWare uses a varied coding curriculum with a strong emphasis on Interactive or STEM learning to cater to children aged 5 to 16. They are mindful of global needs and, in addition to coding, they also focus on skills such as complex problem solving, critical thinking, creativity, decision making, and cognitive flexibility in their lesson plans.
Online sessions simulate physical classrooms as closely as possible. Students are introduced to new concepts with the support of visual demonstration and then, with the constant guidance of the lecturer, they are encouraged to build an application, computer game or animated story. Through this, students also gain knowledge in mathematical concepts, technology adoption, electronic science and engineering. Since the classes are live, students can clarify their doubts immediately, unlike pre-recorded sessions which are less interactive. Students also undertake timed assessments every month. Furthermore, each student has a personal account where all their work is stored. This is accessible anytime, anywhere and encourages self-learning. This interactive and innovative approach to teaching has given numerous children the courage to venture into the world of technology and coding.
The education of children must not suffer during this time of global pandemic, and it is vital that they continue learning. Parents, too, need as much support as possible since they are required to take on the role of teacher, while trying to figure out new routines and coping with other home and work-related stress in this trying time.
The current situation has also placed an emphasis on the importance of technology. Children are home-schooled with the support of online learning systems, and employees are encouraged to work from home with the help of online portals and communication tools. Therefore, it is technology that helps to bridge the gap and connect with the outside world. Familiarity with technology will give children the boost they need in this new world. And, coding is the basis of all the technology used right now, be it social media applications, software, or tech tools. So, it is essential for children to understand and learn coding to communicate and succeed using technology.
Educational institutions such as LearnWare provide an invaluable service. Although Sri Lanka is a developing nation, LearnWare is working to introduce the latest technology and teaching methods so that the children of our country will lack for nothing in a competitive global environment.