#EduTECH Asia’s Webinar series has been put together to continue sharing with our education community on what is upcoming in EdTech and how schools and universities are continuing with teaching and learning during current challenging times.
On 7th May, we put together our Webinar on: “Using education technology to deliver lessons in a crisis” for our Filipino educators. The webinar focused on how during crises, schools and universities can tap into the right technologies that will push the forefront of online teaching. Joining us for the panel discussion were Emie Baylon, EdTech Coordinator, De La Salle Santiago Zobel School, Philippines, who moderated the panel; and Francis Jim Tuscano, Educational Technology Specialist, Xavier School, Philippines, Mark Anthony Sy, Executive Assistant IV to the Undersecretary for Administration, Department of Education, Philippines, Jason De Villa, Director – ICT Officer, University of Asia and the Pacific, Anna Cherylle Ramos, Director – Educational Technology Centre, University of Santo Tomas, Philippines who joined us as panellists.
Following our webinar, we sat together with our panellists to get you some more insights on this important topic. These are responses to some of the questions that came in from our attendees during the Q&A session during the panel discussion.
1. Regarding the engagement of the parents to the learning journey of the students, based on your experience in private schools, what are the effective strategies to orient and engage parents to take part in the distance learning modality of the students especially for the basic education sector?
Jason De Villa: It would be good for school management to consider parents as an active partner in their children’s education. That means regular communication, regular activities –all the things needed to keep them in the loop and on the same page. Whatever training activities you have for teachers and students, be sure to implement parallel activities for the parents so that they know what to expect, what’s need from them, etc.
Mark Anthony Sy: The institution must provide a workshop for parents (webinar session) on how to facilitate learning as para-teachers. Before doing this, the institution must have a timeline or schedule of activities so that parents are guided. Simulation and infomercials are also of great help. Providing also a helpdesk for these concerns is also highly encourage.
Emie Baylon: Parents are partners in education. If their role and responsibility in conducting remote learning is clearly defined and articulated to them, I am pretty sure that the parents will create a huge possibility of ensuring that the remote learning setup will be observed in the household. It is essential that the parents are fully aware and mindful of the schedule, tasks, technology tools and feedback on work of their children on remote setup, the tasks may be bearable. Documents on parent responsibility, online parent engagement from time to time will be great strategies to look into so that collaboration will be observed.
2. The problem in the implementation of the use of online modality lies on reliability and validity of the assessment methods and tools used by the learners. What are the strategies we can put in place in order to determine cheating among our students or a software that will provide us better assessment strategies? For example: How sure are we that the answers we’re getting are from the students themselves and not with the guidance of their parents?
Jason De Villa: There’s no cheat-proof method. Even classroom-based assessments will still have some amount of risk re cheating. The real solution (but not easy to implement, I admit) is to deal with the class and the students in such a way as to strengthen their internal motivation (sense of fulfillment, or accomplishment) such that they are focused not on fulfilling the requirement or the exam score but on attaining the learning objective.
Mark Anthony Sy: We cannot avoid the fact that they can be guided by parents in answering some activities (especially for recorded things). In line with this, we need to adjust the manner we assess learners. Performance Task/ Portfolio is much applicable rather than having the traditional assessment format.
However, if we really wanted to stick with traditional grading methods and assessments, there is still a possible way. Using a Learning Management System combined by a webcam while doing the activity can be an alternative.
Emie Baylon:Discussion on the manner of conducting formative assessment should also be done with parents so that they’ll be aware of how these formative works are done. Alongside, rubrics on how students are graded on performance tasks should also be discussed to parents to lessen confusion and to provide clarity of expectations of work.
3. What are strategies that effectively work for professional development of teachers not only the skills but the right attitude to technology needed for distance learning?
Jason De Villa: Support, support, support. Just like any other person, they will make mistakes or have difficulties, but instead of being shamed or berated, if they are encouraged to keep trying, they will eventually make progress. I believe in the growth mindset. We have to avoid writing off people as “hopeless”. Support can take the form of encouraging messages. Or another colleague willing to spend extra time to tutor the other teacher. Or other ways.
Mark Anthony Sy: The effective strategy is providing them feasible output and success stories who have tried and encountered the process. The institution can invite an expert that is practicing distance learning modalities. In this way, experience will speak itself combined by theories and pedagogical concept.
Emie Baylon:Teachers are great learners. We need to show them models of effective practice. If we will be able to contextualize training sessions in their reality, the learning environments the teachers will design are very apt to the resources available to their students.
4. How can we help address any issues students may be facing that can hinder learning? Such as mental health problems, personal, family, or their readiness to learn despite a pandemic?
Jason De Villa: The same way that a 360-degree feedback program helps both supervisor and employee understand the bigger picture, student wellness should be part of any school’s plans and activities. That means data gathering (surveys), follow up, regular communication of available services (online counseling, etc.), and teacher training.
Mark Anthony Sy: The institution must provide a cyber-wellness program (webinar) that will focus on guidance and counseling sessions. They must provide this at least once a month to ensure that learners are also ready emotionally and psychologically with the New Normal.
Emie Baylon:More programs which will involve guidance counsellors and wellness partners should be engaged in order to provide avenues for establishment of socio – emotional learning. Education of parents on digital citizenship and management of emotional well – being with the help of school guidance program should be tapped.
5. How are we going to consider the learning strategies and methods used by old teachers since there is a generation gap between old teachers and young generations of students? How are they going to adapt the new methods of teaching, especially the online platform and blended learning?
Jason De Villa: Perhaps start with what they know: Facebook,YouTube, etc., and help them see that they can also learn to use technology for teaching. Then try and appeal to their calling as a teacher — their desire to see their students learn, grow. In our case, some older teachers saw some of their students struggle during the shift, and they went out of their way to learn the technology so they could reach out.
Mark Anthony Sy: The seasoned teachers can adapt only if they are treated nicely and guide them very well how a certain technology works. If they are using smartphones, have a Facebook account, able to use ATM and are able to read and check email, they can adopt. We just need to trust them.
Emie Baylon:Seasoned teachers are experts on pedagogy and neophytes are normally the digital natives. Partner these teachers so that an avenue from learning with each other can be fostered. It is just important to motivate them and remind them of their parameters so they won’t go overboard towards each other.
6. How about the students who have no internet and gadgets at home. What is the best option we can give to them so that they will not be left behind on this challenge in education?
Mark Anthony Sy: We can venture to the use of modular print materials and with a guide of CD formatted lessons/ modules. The CD can be played according to a set schedule indicated in the module (manual) and watch recorded instructional videos.
Emie Baylon:Provide pathways and options on how these children can still deliver work. Some can receive printed handouts or perhaps utilize basic resources like books for learning.
7. With regard to specializations for the senior high school students particularly for Technical Vocational Livelihood strand students, there is really a need for actual performance.How do we then conduct the work immersion – when it comes to online education?
Mark Anthony Sy: It will be difficult because the TVL track should have an actual practice. There are existing simulations and games associated with a lesson but it is practical to have an actual demonstration. There should be an arrangement with local government units of barangay so that immersion will still be possible following the guidelines of the government.
You may also be interested in the following webinars on-demand:
- Learning Management System and Virtual Classrooms for institutions, May 21, 2020
- Transformation in Assessment – how online assessment can be effective now and to be prepared for the future, May 26, 2020
- Create inspiring classroom experiences, May 28, 2020
About EduTECH Asia 2020
At EduTECH Asia, we pride ourselves on bringing together thousands of educators from across Asia to evaluate and plan for the future of learning. In 2020, we’re be going bigger and better than ever before. Spanning across 4 exciting days, the event will feature 2 conferences with 12 theatres of content spanning topics in K-12 Education and Higher Education. Plus, there will be Practical Workshops, EduSHARE Roundtables and more. The event will also feature an exhibition showcasing the latest edtech innovations and technologies. Join us at Asia’s largest education festival!
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If you have big ideas and experience in using technology to transform teaching and learning, we want you on our stage at EduTECH Asia – Asia’s largest education festival! Email email@example.com to discuss speaking opportunities.