As Makati Hope Christian School adapts to the new normal way of learning, Candle Pen asked our very own IT Head, Ms. Jocelyn Lagat on her experiences preparing for this school year.
“As a teacher, to prepare for this school year, I reviewed my course guides and identified the most essential competencies that must be included in the syllabus,” Ms. Lagat shared.
According to her, it is very important to have a coherent structure to ensure that the lessons are well-organized and students can easily understand the topic.
“Whether you are a student, a teacher or a parent, you must set up your personal workspace or learning area, prepare the necessary device or laptop and optimize internet connection,” she advised.
Even before the opening of classes, students, parents and teachers were tasked to familiarize with the virtual platform such as Google Meet, Google Classroom and Zoom, among others.
“For educators like me, it is advisable to search for apps and resources or learning activities appropriate for the goals of our course,” she further discussed. “Prepare different types of activities that make the course interesting and engaging for the student.”
Filipino teacher Mr. Daniel Sotomil also aired the same opinion.
“Malaking hamon para sa mga gurong kagaya ko ang makisabay sa bagong birtwal na mundo dulot ng pandemya. Nakasasabay ako sa makabagong ODL gamit ang aking mga kaalaman at estratehiyang natutunan sa birtwal na klase. Maraming paghahanda ang aking isinagawa gaya ng pag-a-upgrade ng bilis ng internet, pagsasagawa ng konkretong routine para sa online class gayundin ang pagsaalang-alang sa espasyo at lugar na aking pagtuturuan.”
For Ms. Lagat, conducting online classes is very beneficial to both the student and the teacher.
“It is very convenient,” she said. “It doesn’t require any travelling.”
Aside from this, the lessons and activities are accessible to students anytime of the day.
“Teachers are free to be creative in ensuring new learning experiences for the students. With the expansion of the digital world, teaching is no longer confined to a typical classroom.”
Teachers, she explained, were given the opportunity to expand their knowledge base and put into practice their technology skills.
However, she said that there are some challenges that the teachers are facing in the conduct of online classes.
“It requires knowledge in the use of technology,” she stated.
According to her, facilitating discussions presents a big challenge as students tend to be more passive. Teachers should prepare activities that keep their students interested and focused on the discussions.
“Preparation of various activities also rely mainly on audio and visual methods, adding new tasks for the teachers,” she added.
Mr. Sotomil said that online teaching is harder than the traditional way of teaching.
“Mas mahirap para sa ‘kin ang pagtuturong birtwal kumpara sa aktwal na pagtuturo sapagkat mas exposed ang mata ng mga mag-aaral at guro sa harap ng kompyuter. Sa kabilang banda, may naidudulot din naman itong adbentahe, gaya ng suliranin sa transportasyon, kabawasan sa gastos, at maaari mo ring magawa ang iba pang gawaing bahay.”
Although it is a common misunderstanding that people in advanced years cannot adapt to the digital transformation, Ms. Lagat has exemplified to be an educator who can keep up with the technology skills of the unger generation.
“Digital transformation is less about technology and is more about people,” she explained. “It’s the attitude of people towards the use of technology and the willingness to learn new skills, activities or technology that help them develop their understanding of this digitalization.”
According to her, any new skills, activity or technology can be understood and mastered by anyone as it only requires patience and practice.
“There are many available free technology webinars that you can join,” she added. “Search for free online tutorials that will guide you in improving your skills or in learning new apps.”
She suggested that parents should subscribe in any online courses to help them and their child in adapting to the online classes.
“Watch tutorials for new apps. Allot a time to practice on how to use the new apps that you have learned.”
For Mr. Sotomil, conducting regular school program like the Buwan ng Wika will be more meaningful.
“Para sa akin, magiging makabuluhan ang pagdiriwang ng Buwan ng Wika, kung ipakikita ng mga mag-aaral ang paggamit at pagpapahala sa wikang Filipino, hindi lamang sa panahon ng pandemya kundi sa araw-araw nilang pamumuhay.
“Mahalaga ang pagdiriwang na ito sapagkat sa ganitong yugto ay nabubuksan ang isipan ng maraming indibidwal na pahalagahan ang wikang Filipino, sapagkat ito ay bahagi ng kanilang pamunuhay bilang isang dugong Pilipino.”
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