How Texting Enhances Learning Pods
As the parent to a kindergartener in a district with all-remote learning in place, I’ve witnessed firsthand the number of learning pods pop up in our neighborhood. Ad-hoc pods are being created in dance studios, gymnastics clubs, and afterschool centers, and parents — faced with the daunting task of juggling work and multiple classroom log-ins for their child — are eager to sign kids up for socialization, learning support, and the chance to get outside of their homes and explore their independence for a bit.
But for small businesses, running a learning pod in the era of Covid-19 is more complex than simple after school offerings. Schools, as well, may feel overwhelmed managing small group “learning pods” on top of administrative questions, and may find text messages the most efficient way to keep everyone in the loop, collate necessary forms and information, and provide a dedicated space for updates and photos. Here, how to use texting capabilities to enhance learning pods.
1-on-1 Chat Enhances Efficiency and Privacy
In order to maintain safety for participants, many pods are asking for completion of daily medical forms. These can be done quickly and privately through a 1-on-1 Chat. This can allow parents to upload forms, share information, or otherwise connect with administrators quickly. 1-on-1 Chat can also be great for learning pod facilitators to check in individually with the parents of students. This can be tough to do over the phone, especially when parents may be overwhelmed with work needs. 1-on-1 chat allows both learning pod facilitators and parents to connect on their own time.
Text Capabilities Allow Child-Centered Businesses to Scale Up
Learning pods can be great ways to expand your business — and essential for parents. As families adapt to remote learning, many child-centered businesses, such as gymnastics facilities and dance studios, are finding their spaces are ideal to invite small groups of children to work on their own devices and classwork in a supervised environment. Text capabilities can allow you to guage interest in pods, understand the needs and concerns of your customers, and create a valuable service within the community for families.
Text Reaffirms the Family-Pod Connection
With Covid-19 procedures meaning that parents often can’t go inside facilities, parents can feel cut-off from any pod activities. Creating a specific pod text list allows you to send photos, videos, and updates, so parents and caregivers can feel a part of the community. Text lists can also make it seamless to send reminders on pod needs and update families on schedule changes. Texts also offer poll capabilities, allowing your business to take the pulse on how families are feeling and what services they may want to see.
Texting Makes Payments Seamless
Whether it’s a materials fee or monthly or weekly payment, text-based messaging is ideal for sending reminders and ensuring your accounting runs smoothly. Texting can also be helpful in sorting families on different payment schedules. For example, you can divide lists between two-day-a-week families, three-day-a-week families, and five-day-a-week families, giving payment breakdowns and reminders, instead of having to chase down or send bills to all families individually. These reminders can be synced to your payment system, allowing the opportunity for parents to easily pay through their phone in one step.
Texting Gives Learning Pods Schedule Flexibility
Private learning pods can be interdependent on the public school’s calendar. This can make it tricky to update websites and share availability. But if you have a dedicated list of parents interested in learning pods, it’s easy to send information based on conditions. For instance, if schools have to switch to an all-remote option, you can easily spread the word about a first-come, first-serve pod opportunity at your child-centered facility. You can also share information about openings, offers, and future plans with leads who have not yet committed to a pod.