Sometimes even small talk can have enormous effects on students’ wellbeing. Giving kids a chance to talk with adults about their lives outside of class can be critical for their social-emotional development. But during the pandemic, online classes didn’t often allow the time for that individual attention.
That was the thinking behind Along, a free digital reflection tool developed by the nonprofit Gradient Learning and the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative and announced yesterday at the 2021 annual conference of ISTE, the International Society for Technology in Education, which is EdSurge’s parent organization. The platform helps teachers prompt students to talk about their personal lives through recorded video, audio or written texts as a way to support them emotionally, not just academically.
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