When the pandemic first went underway during the school year and student and teachers were forced into lockdown at home, parents became exceedingly worried that their kids might inadvertently fall behind in their education, and teachers are also worried about the future paychecks that they might receive. After all, how are teachers supposed to teach their students if everyone is supposed to stay at home?
Enter Zoom, a online service that is not too dissimilar from FaceTime or Skype, with large groups of people being able to chat with each other via video conference from all over. As long as you have Internet, you can basically chat anywhere. This app has been a huge godsend for people to be able to keep in touch with their loved ones without the fear of contamination, but it’s been an even huger godsend to students with keeping up with their studies, and teachers with helping teach students in an infection-free environment. It’s because of this that Zoom has added a feature that’ll definitely help old and new users alike: Focus Mode.
How does “Focus Mode” work, you ask? Well, with this new feature, the host of the video conference (or in other words, the teacher) chooses to activate this feature, the participants are only able to see their own (or the teacher’s) screens.
This feature can help keep students focused on their own learning materials (hence the name of the feature) and not on their fellow classmate’s screens, and therefore possibly help students turn in work that is of better quality.
This feature can be turned on or off by the host whenever they choose, and this can be very helpful during class activities such as a presentation, when the teacher can turn on “Focus Mode” while the presentation is taking place, and then turn it off when it’s time for the class to have a discussion about it.
The feature is also believed to be a huge asset for kids who genuinely struggle with focusing no matter how hard they try, especially in a school environment. This can include kids who might have attention-deficit disorder (ADD), attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), or any other sort of neurodivergent diagnosis that might have similar symptoms. People who might have these sorts of diagnoses have a significantly hard time concentrating, which can deeply affect the quality of work they turn in, and often times, online learning can only make focusing harder. Features like this can really help them, and they can even be considered as an asset for neurodivergent kids and their grateful parents.
All in all, this new Zoom feature is predicted to become extremely popular, and also super helpful. With the pandemic still going strong and showing no signs of stopping anytime soon, parents can rest easy knowing that their children won’t be falling behind, and teachers can rest easy knowing that their jobs are still secure. Thanks to Zoom, millions of kids still have bright futures, even in spite of these trying times.