We often hear the term “learning gap” in the field of education. When a student fails to make academic progress, we consider learning gaps as a reason for their incompetency or trouble understanding the learning material.
But what are these learning gaps, and how do they form?
More importantly, how can we help close these gaps and get students back on track?
The gap or difference between what a student is expected to learn by a certain grade level and what they have in reality learned till that level is what is termed as the learning gap. In other words, when a student fails to adapt a certain reading standard or level by the time they complete any standard or school year. If the student fails to adapt the skill of reading books by this age, there might be a learning gap in reading and comprehension exists.
Learning gaps are compounding and can be troublesome for students lagging. Now, identifying a gap can be challenging. As learning is based on building blocks where students are always pushed to expand on topics over time and apply them to new concepts while progressing.
This learning structure grows throughout a student's academic career, with new skills developing from the skills the student has already mastered. Not every student learns at the same pace, though – which is why what starts as a small learning gap can eventually become a more serious problem.
After learning about the learning gap, the question is do we know how to close it?
Let’s find out!
Look at a few tried-and-true methods that can effectively close the achievement gap:
■ Spend Time: Teachers need to provide more time to those students who are lagging in the classroom and should explain everything in detail and follow a structure while teaching. They should cater to the needs of every student and instruct them with more zeal, more repetition, and frequency. Students should also be given time to reflect on what they have learned or absorbed.
■ Track Progress: Formative assessments should be introduced by teachers so that they can monitor and evaluate the progress of students, track their performance and work towards closing the learning gap. They must set benchmarks, set challenging but reachable goals, be true to the students about their performance, and take the help of technology to improve.
■ Connect Home and School: One of the most important factors in closing the learning gap is proper communication between teachers, school management, caregivers, and communities. Several studies and research have indicated that maximum involvement of caregivers in the education of their children has resulted in more positive student achievement.
■ Keep Instruction Evidence-Based: Help in the continuous progress of everyone, lend your helping hand to struggling students, and encourage them to succeed at every level by incorporating evidence-based learning programs. These programs are quite helpful and include ongoing support from performance data, helping teachers to assess student responses and use assessments to inform instruction.
■ Maintain Rigor: Students can indeed achieve at high levels of learning only when they’re taught at high levels. A strongly developed curriculum that comprises balanced instruction, while focusing on the importance of building comprehension skills, encourages students to succeed within their ability and capacity. Stop making assumptions, keep an open mind and get to know your students more, who they are and what are their abilities and interests. It will help you better in instructing.
Hence, we can conclude that teachers can effectively close the learning gaps of students by communicating properly with their students and building a good relationship with students. So, if you are a teacher who wants to develop teaching skills to help your students achieve success, go through the above techniques and steps and incorporate them in your classrooms while teaching!
Full of knowledge and useful information, suggestion for lesson plan and ideas for support learning. The knowledge, as mother and "home" teacher was incomplete, after this course I'm feel more comfortable in these topics.
It was hard work but I learned a lot. Because of this it was well worth it and I am well on my way to succeeding in my goal to become an English teacher in Asia. Instead of being scared as I previously was, I am only a little bit nervous now that I have this experience under my belt.
It was a challenge for me as it been a long time since I had done any academic studying but the course was structured well overall as the course progressed I was relating more to what I was doing at school and implementing them and seeing results I could see my self-confidence growing thru the course.
The course was very informative and I really liked the fact that I could do the Work on my own time. That made less pressure and I could do my best work for the assignments.
* Disclaimer : Results may vary
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