Reenvisioning Education through Hybrid Learning


This week at #gtchat we looked at hybrid learning, how it differs from blended learning and the benefits for GT students. Blended learning has traditionally been championed in the K12 learning environment balancing in class, face to face learning with online learning within a particular class. Hybrid learning, a more nuanced form of blended learning, was previously developed and used in collegiate settings. Hybrid learning is multi-faceted. It combines traditional classroom experiences with online classes and experiential learning in a refined way to meet the individual needs of students. Hybrid learning is tantamount to every gifted advocate’s dream of what educating a GT student should look like … individualized programs that address very specific needs while providing all learners an appropriate education.

How can hybrid learning address educational needs in the era of #COVID19? It has become apparent that ‘going’ to school will look a whole lot different in the upcoming school year, regardless of where you live, than in previous years. And, this change may well be in place for some time. Lessons learned at the university level can serve the K12 community well … individualized response to students needs with varying degrees of face to face time, learning through experience as well as distance learning. Hybrid learning will need to evolve; to become more flexible and all stakeholders will need respond will equal flexibility. The foe is no longer an entity or person … the school board, the classroom teacher, the parent … but a virus.

What facets of hybrid learning are best for f2f & which are best for online options? Face to face interaction is best served in traditional classrooms which foster socialization, discussing expectations and responsibilities, demonstrating skills and providing feedback. Face to face interaction is also a plus for experiential learning such as job shadowing, mentoring, internships, and research projects. Online learning can enhance group work through collaboration with intellectual peers, provide opportunity for reflection and critical analysis as well as for self-paced learning and self-assessment. It is an excellent way to serve the needs of rural learners by providing access to high quality instruction and resources not readily available to this population of students.

Assessments of hybrid learning must be grounded in best practices and reflect the individual needs of the learner. Daily interactions can reinforce positive behaviors and help shape both content and course objectives. Assessments may be summative such as projects or portfolios. They can be formative such as discussions (in class and online) or traditional homework assignments when attendance is unpredictable. By using assessment tools to gather data, the resulting analytics provide information about how well students are retaining what they learn and when mastery occurs in all aspects of hybrid learning.

Regardless what approach school districts take to providing education in the era of #COVID19, it is going to profoundly challenge parents in all aspects of their lives. The learning curve will be steep. The initial response to the onset of #COVID19 was sudden and somewhat unpredictable, but few realized the extent and duration of the response which was going to be needed. Reality is forcing uncomfortable decisions. It’s doubtful that most schools and institutions will fully grasp the consequences or be able to provide perfect solutions for all stakeholders. There will need to be cooperation from employers, caregivers, and all education providers.

Hybrid learning can meet many of our current needs. It takes time to design and implement quality programs. Utilizing readily available resources is key to streamlining the planning process. Above all, we must realize that this is a new and difficult time for everyone involved.  Its important to anticipate problems and have a responsive action plan ready; be willing to ask for student feedback and then manage student expectations. Hybrid learning may be beneficial for the times in which we live, but may well prove to be the future of education we needed … a silver lining to a terrible situation.

A transcript of this chat can be found at Wakelet.

Global #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented  is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Thursdays at 8E/7C/6M/5P in the U.S. and Fridays at Noon NZST/10 AM AEST/1 AM UK  to discuss current topics in the gifted community and meet experts in the field. Transcripts of our weekly chats can be found at Wakelet. Our Facebook Page provides information on the chat and news and information regarding the gifted community. Also, checkout our Pinterest Page and Playlist on YouTube.

Lisa Conrad About the authorLisa Conrad is the Moderator of Global #gtchat Powered by TAGT and Social Media Manager of the Global #gtchat Community. She is a longtime  advocate for gifted children and also blogs at  Gifted Parenting Support. Lisa can be contacted at:



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Image courtesy of Pixabay Pixabay License

Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.


Posted on June 26, 2020, in curriculum, Education, gifted education, Mentoring, Online Education, parenting and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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