When we first implemented blended learning at Colégio Dante Alighieri, we were inspired by the belief that every student learns differently. We wanted to give students multiple modalities for learning, as well as a place where they could really hone their skills one on one with their teacher if they needed. This is what drove us to adopt our hybrid rotation model, and the fact that there just aren’t enough hours in the school day to accomplish everything we wanted is what spurred the usage of a flipped classroom. Students not only have autonomy over their learning, but they are engaged in their studies and confident in themselves.
One of the most important things you need when starting a blended-learning program is having a school director who will support the teachers. The administration of the school must be involved and excited about blended learning if they want the whole school to succeed.
Next, you need someone from within the school to bring the professional development to teachers. Outside consultants do not know the cultures of the schools they work with, and so cannot be a great influence in the culture shift that must occur when implementing blended learning.
Lastly, when just starting, pilot. It doesn’t matter how small your school is, test out your program with a few classes, then when you’ve worked out many of the problems and iterated on design, expand to more teachers and grades and subjects.
The trajectory of the Dante Alighieri School began in the early last century, when an Italian colony settled in São Paulo. Today, with more than 4,400 students, the Dante Alighieri School is one of the most traditional schools of São Paulo. It started a Blended Learning project in 2014, in partnership with the Lemann Foundation and the Peninsula Institute. These institutions were experiencing blended learning models that could work in most Brazilian public schools. For such experiments, they had the support of the Institute Clayton Christensen, who accompanied the work of 16 teachers, over a year. Throughout this project, the Blended Learning proved to be a sustainable way for the integration of technological resources at school.
Contact: Verônica Martins Cannatá
Colégio Dante Alighieri
1061 Alameda Jau
São Paulo, São Paulo
Telephone: +55 11 3179-4400