• Michael Garrett

Why Distance Learning Remains an Option To Physical School

Updated: Aug 28, 2020

In these unprecedented times of Covid-19, traditional forms of education delivered in a physical built environment is no longer the only way for children to learn.

Whilst the majority of schools are attempting to adopt those health safeguards that are necessary for them to open in September, they will be very different environments to those that we have all been accustomed to for so long with the need to adhere to strict social distancing, wearing of masks, staggered drop-off and collection times and frequent sanitising. Inevitably, this will seriously disrupt the usual rhythm of the school day where the children not only follow the curriculum but who also normally enjoy many other types of activities and social interaction with their friends, teachers and wider community.

There are some schools which consider this will have a greater physiological effect and hindrance to learning than if children continued to work from home until there is a fully tested vaccine or if the virus disappears from the world.

As Marbella Montessori is a progressive school, this is easier to achieve than one which follows traditional teaching and testing where the primary objective is to obtain an academic qualification. This is because the emphasis is on child-centred learning where students, in addition to all the usual curriculum subjects, acquire independent thinking, self-sufficiency and time management together with the other skills of critical thinking, collaboration, creativeness and resilience that they will need for the 21st century.

Following the recent forced school closure, the students at MMS quickly adapted to home learning to a daily schedule similar to the one they followed at the physical school with a combination of short periods of direct online face-to-face teaching and longer sessions of independent and real-life, project based cross-curricular learning. The online school has since been developed further through the use of Personal Learning Plans, individually tailored to the ability of each student, the Firefly Learning Platform to provide a student accessible portal and extended health and wellbeing activities including mindfulness and yoga.

It is however fully understood that home learning even if delivered in a more flexible way, requires dedication from the parent’s side albeit this is outweighed by other advantages that would not normally be available if their child left home each day to go to school. In addition to nurturing independent learning, home education can deepen family bonds and provides an opportunity of seeing first hand, the progress of the child and to see them develop as a special, unique, well rounded individual on a daily basis. It will also most probably be the one and only time that parents will have the opportunity of spending extended periods of time with their children which has not been possible for previous generations.

To learn more about how online learning could benefit your child in these uncertain times, visit

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