SEOUL, April 5 (Korea Bizwire) — In a new learning environment in South Korea created by the coronavirus outbreak, getting glued to the television screen won’t be such a bad thing for young students.
The education ministry announced on Sunday that, starting on April 20, first and second graders in elementary school will be following instructions offered in TV programs and handout materials, rather than through live online classes like older students.
Those programs will air on the state-run Educational Broadcasting System (EBS).
The COVID-19 pandemic has pushed back the start of the new academic year, which would have begun on March 2.
After several delays, the education ministry announced late last month that the new semester will start with online classes on April 9.
High school and middle school seniors will be the first to attend virtual classrooms, with younger students to follow gradually starting on April 16.
Those in first, second and third grades in elementary school were set to start their online classes on April 20.
However, with younger students unlikely to stay focused while sitting in front of computers or smart devices for up to 40 minutes at a time, the education ministry came up with the new curriculum for first and second grade students.
In addition to watching EBS shows, these young students will receive additional materials from their schools that are designed to help them with writing, drawing and arithmetic.
Teachers will be checking on students’ “attendance” using the comments section in their online classrooms or text messages with their parents.