Learning Management Platforms are what we need to provide quality online instruction. Classroom teachers and other educators are facing the challenge of distance education in the face of this COVID-19 pandemic. In modern classrooms teachers have used online resources to differentiate lessons and to enrich their content. For today’s students to truly be engaged in learning, online resources are integral. At the end of the 2019-2020 school year, a large portion of distance education was encouraging students to use those online resources that they had interacted with in class. The problem with this format of distance education is that it provided little direct instruction from the teacher.
Therefore, the challenge that several states are struggling with at this time is finding a quality Learning Management Platform on which to present this direct instruction from the teachers to the students for distance education. With a quality Learning Management Platform, the teacher is in complete control of the content and presentation of the curriculum, just like her classroom. To ensure this, a quality Learning Management Platform allows a school or district to manage four main needs.
The first need is content management. A Learning Management Platform must have tools to deliver the electronic content. Teachers may present the information in a written format, they may import information from other sources, and may even want access to video meetings. A quality Learning Management Platform enables educators to create, store, and re-purpose the content that they plan and ultimately present it to students in a way that is easily accessible.
Curriculum Mapping and Planning
The second need is curriculum mapping and planning. Platforms for education must provide tools and storage for the educator to personalize content and assess students. Access to the state standards and the curriculum is essential.
The third need is communication. Learning management platforms must support ways for the educator to communicate with the student on multiple levels. Some of those levels include email, discussion forums, direct messages, comments, and announcements. In the K-12 setting, communication with the parents of the students is also necessary.
The final need is academic management. The educator must be able to track the student’s progress, give the necessary feedback, and assess the student. This may include pupil information, attendance, e-portfolios, documents, videos, etc. The limits to this area will determine effectiveness of the Learning Management Platform.