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Blended Learning: A Team Effort

The mix of eLearning and face-to-face learning — blended learning—is a group endeavor. Blended learning strategies are effectively used by many thousands of individual teachers, but the technology is all the more powerful when leveraged by teacher teams to create competency-based environments, based on student progress and continuous, accurate assessment, for meaningful and personalized instruction. This approach is of particular value in elementary math learning to build the strong foundation and confidence needed for a truly successful school career and life after school.

The Support and Implementation Team
Bringing blended learning into any educational community is a major undertaking, with many moving parts. The process of building and maintaining support to make the shift takes time, because this approach isn’t about just adding hardware and software to existing models. It’s about a real shift that needs to be carefully nurtured. To ensure that it doesn’t feel like just one more initiative, it requires a dedicated team of stakeholders: superintendent, school board, teachers, teachers union, principals, and the community working together. If you’re just getting started in your own efforts, read Introduction to Blended Learning for Elementary Schools to help you understand the benefits, models, and power of this proven approach.

Team Teaching
Taking advantage of team teaching in conjunction with blended learning makes sense when learners can be effectively grouped by proficiency. Models that incorporate a lab may be able to use paraprofessionals, which is helpful with larger sized classes/workgroups. Working in teaching teams spreads responsibility, encourages creativity, and builds community among colleagues. Additional viewpoints and support encourage more active class participation and independent thinking from students, especially if there is team balance for gender, race, culture, and age. A combination of scheduled team-based learning, an online professional learning network, and a library of just-in-time resources can support teacher learning teams in a way that is efficient and effective. You can also share ideas by participating in DreamBox-sponsored blended learning global online community.

Small Student Group and Teacher Learning Team
Students can be grouped according to their proficiency levels into small learning teams. This is an effective way to teach, promote discussion and group engagement in a way that saves time, promotes dialogue, builds trust, and more effectively bridges learning gaps. To see how one school implemented blended learning and raised scores to new heights, review the Rocky Mount case study.

Student and Teacher Tutoring Team
While learning goals based on curriculum standards remain the same for all students, a technologically supported individualized learning approach enables each student to progress through learning materials at their own speed and according to the learning gaps they need to fill. Personalized learning is best achieved through one-on-one instruction between a teacher / tutor and their student when time and resources exist. DreamBox Intelligent Adaptive Learning™, with its continuous monitoring and seamless assessment, shows exactly where students need additional instruction so the teacher can uniquely tailor and individualize instruction to speed student achievement – and build teacher satisfaction as well.

Blended Learning and Team DreamBox
If your district or school is looking for a proven, easy to implement, online Pre-K through Grade 5, DreamBox has the program and the ongoing support you need. Find out more about how to get started and get support in your blended learning strategy from the knowledgeable team at DreamBox.

Jason Bedford
Sr Vice President of Sales & Client Success at DreamBox Learning

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