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Event
  • 07.06.2021

Teachers as agents for change for inclusive education - Webinar

Background Information

The GEM Report, NEPCs, EASNIE and the International Task Force on Teachers for Education 2030 will convene an interactive webinar on the findings and recommendations from the 2021 Central and Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia Report on inclusion and education.

The Report provides comparative analysis on inclusion and education for all learners regardless of background or ability across 30 education systems. Teachers from across the region are key agents for change when it comes to inclusion in education. In total, 17 education systems across the region have legislation or policies that support the development of learning communities to widen teachers’ professional development opportunities and share experiences and effective practices to strengthen equity and inclusion.

 

Objectives of the event

The event will spotlight the activities of teachers as change makers across the region working to ensure that every child has the right to go to school and learn regardless of who they are and where they live.

The format will include a presentation of the new 2021 regional report as well as smaller group discussions, with a particular focus on the role of teachers as change makers within the classroom, school community and the teaching profession.

  1. Teachers as change makers – will illuminate initiatives to foster an inclusive ethos in schools, including practices to elevate student voices for inclusion with a focus on engaging the most marginalized learners.
  2. Working with parents and school communities - will discuss promising practices to establish partnerships between parents, communities and teaching staff to strengthen inclusion both inside and outside the classroom.
  3. Strengthening inclusive practices within the teaching profession – will share insights into these regional learning communities and connect likeminded professionals to share experiences and effective practices to foster inclusion in education.

Please register here.

Agenda

Agenda

Event
  • 07.06.2021

Teachers as agents for change for inclusive education - Webinar

Background Information

The GEM Report, NEPCs, EASNIE and the International Task Force on Teachers for Education 2030 will convene an interactive webinar on the findings and recommendations from the 2021 Central and Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia Report on inclusion and education.

The Report provides comparative analysis on inclusion and education for all learners regardless of background or ability across 30 education systems. Teachers from across the region are key agents for change when it comes to inclusion in education. In total, 17 education systems across the region have legislation or policies that support the development of learning communities to widen teachers’ professional development opportunities and share experiences and effective practices to strengthen equity and inclusion.

 

Objectives of the event

The event will spotlight the activities of teachers as change makers across the region working to ensure that every child has the right to go to school and learn regardless of who they are and where they live.

The format will include a presentation of the new 2021 regional report as well as smaller group discussions, with a particular focus on the role of teachers as change makers within the classroom, school community and the teaching profession.

  1. Teachers as change makers – will illuminate initiatives to foster an inclusive ethos in schools, including practices to elevate student voices for inclusion with a focus on engaging the most marginalized learners.
  2. Working with parents and school communities - will discuss promising practices to establish partnerships between parents, communities and teaching staff to strengthen inclusion both inside and outside the classroom.
  3. Strengthening inclusive practices within the teaching profession – will share insights into these regional learning communities and connect likeminded professionals to share experiences and effective practices to foster inclusion in education.

Please register here.

Agenda

Agenda

Event
  • 18.05.2021

The transforming power of e-ducation in Africa

On the occasion of Africa Day, ProFuturo is organising on 25 May the event The transforming power of e-ducation in Africa, a dialogue on the challenges and opportunities of education on the African continent. The meeting will be streamed on ProFuturo’s YouTube channel from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm (Spanish time). You will be able to enjoy the event in both Spanish and English thanks to simultaneous translation. In addition, there will be sign language translation in Spanish.

The meeting is co-organised by ProFuturo, Casa África, UNHCR, Empieza Por Educar, Entreculturas, Save the Children and World Vision, with the support of Planeta Futuro and Mundo Negro. The event will focus on Africa and the progress that has been made in the field of education in recent years. The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the learning of millions of African children will also be discussed. 

The representatives of the participating organisations will analyse the challenges and opportunities for education in Africa today. Teacher training, access to education for refugee children, boosting digital education and enrolling girls in school will be among the issues on the table. 

The event will be supported by Planeta Futuro and Mundo Negro, who will reflect on how Africa is reported in Spain and how a comprehensive story, which also includes positive news, can help change our perception of the continent and contribute to its transformation. 

More info: https://profuturo.education/en/news/event-education-profuturo-africa-day-25-may/

Event
  • 18.05.2021

The transforming power of e-ducation in Africa

On the occasion of Africa Day, ProFuturo is organising on 25 May the event The transforming power of e-ducation in Africa, a dialogue on the challenges and opportunities of education on the African continent. The meeting will be streamed on ProFuturo’s YouTube channel from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm (Spanish time). You will be able to enjoy the event in both Spanish and English thanks to simultaneous translation. In addition, there will be sign language translation in Spanish.

The meeting is co-organised by ProFuturo, Casa África, UNHCR, Empieza Por Educar, Entreculturas, Save the Children and World Vision, with the support of Planeta Futuro and Mundo Negro. The event will focus on Africa and the progress that has been made in the field of education in recent years. The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the learning of millions of African children will also be discussed. 

The representatives of the participating organisations will analyse the challenges and opportunities for education in Africa today. Teacher training, access to education for refugee children, boosting digital education and enrolling girls in school will be among the issues on the table. 

The event will be supported by Planeta Futuro and Mundo Negro, who will reflect on how Africa is reported in Spain and how a comprehensive story, which also includes positive news, can help change our perception of the continent and contribute to its transformation. 

More info: https://profuturo.education/en/news/event-education-profuturo-africa-day-25-may/

Event
  • 18.05.2021

The transforming power of e-ducation in Africa

On the occasion of Africa Day, ProFuturo is organising on 25 May the event The transforming power of e-ducation in Africa, a dialogue on the challenges and opportunities of education on the African continent. The meeting will be streamed on ProFuturo’s YouTube channel from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm (Spanish time). You will be able to enjoy the event in both Spanish and English thanks to simultaneous translation. In addition, there will be sign language translation in Spanish.

The meeting is co-organised by ProFuturo, Casa África, UNHCR, Empieza Por Educar, Entreculturas, Save the Children and World Vision, with the support of Planeta Futuro and Mundo Negro. The event will focus on Africa and the progress that has been made in the field of education in recent years. The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the learning of millions of African children will also be discussed. 

The representatives of the participating organisations will analyse the challenges and opportunities for education in Africa today. Teacher training, access to education for refugee children, boosting digital education and enrolling girls in school will be among the issues on the table. 

The event will be supported by Planeta Futuro and Mundo Negro, who will reflect on how Africa is reported in Spain and how a comprehensive story, which also includes positive news, can help change our perception of the continent and contribute to its transformation. 

More info: https://profuturo.education/en/news/event-education-profuturo-africa-day-25-may/

Event
  • 26.04.2021

Conversations on Teaching during COVID-19 Webinar Series

At the end of 2020, the OECD, UNESCO and the Teacher Task Force launched a campaign to hear from teachers around the world about their experience of teaching during the pandemic. We asked them to send in videos describing how they adapted to the crisis, and many wonderful and fascinating insights were shared. These are now publicly available in the Global Teaching InSights platform

To build on this extraordinary work by teachers, we are hosting a series of interactive virtual Conversations on Teaching During Covid-19. Each conversation will bring together a panel of teachers around a common theme to talk more about the challenges they faced and how they have responded in innovative ways.

If you are a teacher or school leader, we invite you join us in these conversations and take part in a deeper discussion on the innovations we saw from teachers around the world. 

Each conversation will be hosted on Zoom Meeting and will be fully interactive, with all participants encouraged to join the discussion.

  • 8 April - Conversation 1: Learning continuity and innovative pedagogy (hosted by UNESCO). Watch the meeting recording.
  • 15 April - Conversation 2: Social-emotional support in a time of crisis (hosted by UNESCO). Watch the meeting recording.
  • 22 April - Conversation 3: Building a stronger profession together (hosted by the OECD). 

Find out more about the starring teachers:

Conversation 1: Learning continuity and innovative pedagogy (Watch the meeting recording)

  • Thomas Harefa from Indonesia shares how he has brought the students back to the center of the teaching practice through self-paced learning
  • Sandeepa Chavan from Ghana shares her experience on making learning fun and enjoyable.
  • Amit Bansal from India shares how he used coding to teach mathematics and geometrics.
  • Seenu Atoll School from the Maldives promotes a creative reading programme for early childhood education.

 

Conversation 2: Social-emotional support in a time of crisis (Watch the meeting recording)

  • Marina Watt  from Hong Kong (China) shares how she created “affirmation cards” that help students focus to positive thinking. 
  • Nana Gulic  from Croatia shares how she developed resources to help students verbalize their emotions and shared them in an online platform.
  • Noemi Baysa  from the Philippines develops a global citizen project
  • Daniel Antonio Jiménez  from Colombia had his students create music with homemade instruments, involving their families as well.

 

Conversation 3: Building a stronger profession together

 

Closing Webinar:  Rethinking the classroom after COVID-19: Insights and innovations from teachers (Register to participate or watch on YouTube)

  • Andreas Schleicher, Director for Education and Skills, OECD
  • Borhene Chakroun, Director of the Division of Policies and Lifelong Learning, UNESCO
  • Catherine Gregory, Director of Teaching and Learning / Head of English at Cheadle Hume School in the United Kingdom
  • Fernando Mesquita, Educational Leader at a school in Brazil
  • Filipa Matos, History and Citizenship Teacher in Portugal
  • Eirene Christa Luturmas, Elementary School Teacher in Indonesia
Blog
  • 02.09.2020

3 inspiring stories of how teachers kept teaching through the crisis

Education has been on the front line of COVID-19. For six months now, teachers around the world have been navigating education systems affected by school closures, adapting and improvising to keep their students learning. 

Even as many countries usher their students back into classrooms, with all the fresh challenges that entails, inspiration can be found in the examples of teachers who rose to meet the occasion. They remind us that teachers are more than just conduits for knowledge. They are a vital lifeline for their students, now and during whatever is next.

 

Remote learning without internet

The challenge faced by Fransiskus Xaverius Faima, a teacher from Indonesia, is a familiar one: how can teachers and students connect if many are not connected to the internet? Internet coverage in Indonesia is fairly high - around 66 percent of people have access - but connectivity rarely stretches beyond urban hubs. While schools are closed, students in remote communities like Faimau’s may not be getting any education at all. Faimau from the Kecil Fatutasu elementary school in East Nusa Tenggara, now travels for hours each day to set up small learning groups. He takes a few students at a time through lessons, gathered around his single laptop. 

Elsewhere in Indonesia, responding to the pandemic has required a creative approach. In West Papua, teachers are working with education consultants to design offline curriculums, printing and distributing materials that creatively integrate students’ home surroundings into their lessons. A simple pot of boiling water, for example, can teach a student much about physics and mathematics. 

For Faimau, all this extra effort is simply part of a teacher’s duty. Education, he understands, works best when it is consistent: “children have to keep learning because if we just leave, they will go back to square one.” His ad-hoc classes may not be able to offer his students everything they would get in a traditional classroom, but, for now, keeping them engaged is enough.

 

Delivering free school meals

Whilst widespread internet access in the UK has encouraged a national transition to online learning, the COVID-19 pandemic has presented challenges of a different sort. The Western Primary School in Grimsby is situated in a deprived part of town, where four out of ten students receive free school meals. For many, it’s the only good meal they’re guaranteed all day. Zane Powels, the assistant head teacher at Western Primary, recognised the impact lockdown could have on these students. 

Five weeks after schools in England closed, Powels had already delivered more than two thousand meals to students, walking door-to-door, laden with lunch packages containing sandwiches, fruit and snacks. This also allowed him to check up on the children’s wellbeing whilst locked-down at home. 

5 weeks into lockdown and I have walked over 125miles delivering nearly 2000 school meals with a combined weight of over 1100kg. More importantly, children and parents from our school have been supported through these tough times and will continue to be ‘The school that cares’, tweets Powels.

Western Primary is not unique – the centrality of teachers and schools to students’ lives has been thrown into sharp relief during the pandemic, and Powels exemplifies the sense of responsibility felt by teachers everywhere.

 

Teaching in a truck

In Guanajuato, Mexico, a teacher known only as Nay, recently won widespread praise on Twitter after a picture emerged of her holding a makeshift lesson in the back of her red pick-up truck. She and a student, both masked, sat around a small table, pouring over school work. Nay is an elementary school teacher who specialises in working with children with disabilities such as autism. 

Just over half of people in Mexico have access to the internet. Aware that many of her pupils cannot get online or even have books, she converted her truck into a mobile classroom and travelled for hours a day to sit with them in person. While Nay is insistent that her extra efforts are nothing special, her story does highlight how the pandemic has hit vulnerable students the hardest. In these difficult times, it’s those students who occupy their teachers’ thoughts the most.

These three stories highlight what all teachers know: nothing beats being there in person. The situation with COVID-19 continues to evolve, and the promise of a return to ‘normality’ may be on the horizon. But until then, let’s take inspiration from those teachers who are doing everything to be there for their students.

Cover image published in thejakartapost.com courtesy of teacher Fransiskus Xaverius Faimau.

Blog
  • 29.07.2020

Teachers speak up about responding to COVID-19

Fifteen teachers from around the world shared their experiences ensuring that learning continued during school closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic with the Teacher Task Force. The challenges that teachers faced and the strategies they developed can guide the next steps in responding to COVID-19 as countries and organizations plan to reopen schools and develop more resilient education systems.

 

A fine balance: Teaching through the pandemic   

Through their unique stories, key themes have emerged about teachers’ professional and personal challenges during the pandemic. Professional challenges included variations in both their own and their students’ digital literacy and in their ability to access online learning. Teachers also faced the personal challenges of maintaining work-life balance and dealing emotionally with the sudden changes brought on by the pandemic.

Teachers also drew attention to the inherent inequities in education systems and their implications for distance education, in rich and poor countries alike.

Private schools in urban areas are investing in online schooling for their pupils. However, the level of investment is not standardized and not consistent among schools. … Online education is not a feasible option in a country where most people have no access to the Internet.

Nadya Faquir, a teacher from Mozambique

Online learning is based on the assumption that students have the possibility to follow online learning at home. Unfortunately, this is not the case for all students. Less advantaged children have a greater chance of falling behind. 

Anne-Fleur Lurvink, secondary school teacher, Rotterdam, the Netherlands

Protecting the socio-emotional well-being of students during the return to school, especially where the safety of school spaces is essential for teaching and learning activities, was also highlighted as a challenge.

We also worry about the social and emotional well-being of our students ….[s]chools are more than just places where knowledge is transferred.; it is where children socialize and where they grow. Schools are safe places for those who have unstable homes. How to ensure this at a distance?

Anne-Fleur Lurvink, secondary school teacher, Rotterdam, the Netherlands

The suddenness of school closures left teachers little time for preparation. It wasn’t clear to some teachers how they should use the different online and distance education tools, and what the implications of these tools were for the practice of teaching and ensuring student learning. Teachers had varying levels of experiences with the use of technology for teaching. For some, the transition to distance education was neither easy nor smooth.  

The news of Covid-19 was so sudden that it had us stunned at first. Nevertheless, we immediately started activating various platforms to be ready to provide distance learning. …The process was not a smooth one though.”

Barbara Riccardi, primary school teacher, Rome, Italy

It was not an easy initiative to take. We didn't have any resources as we were not prepared for this long lockdown. We had no skill regarding video editing. In spite of the challenges, we made it happen.”

Shaila Sharmin, fellow, Teach For Bangladesh

 

Strategies for ensuring learning doesn’t stop

In developing strategies to continue teaching and learning, teachers have had to consider many factors, including their own access to technology, their understanding of students’ access to and use of technology platforms, and their knowledge of how their students learn. They have adapted their teaching practices accordingly, while remaining emotionally available for students throughout the process.

Teachers have also demonstrated their commitment to using multiple resources to ensure learning continues despite disruption of school schedules and school closures.

I work in a community of extreme poverty, with few resources. Together with teacher colleagues, I have mapped out the best way to work with these students, in view of their social and economic reality.

Débora Garofalo,  a technology teacher in Brazil’s public education network and a technology manager at the São Paulo State Education Secretariat

I have therefore had to adjust my teaching for those who go at a slower pace, due to lack of self-discipline or depression due to isolation. I start each lesson with emotional encouragement, get feedback on how people are feeling, and generally have slowed my pace or expectations…. I have tried to keep it simple as pupils are having a lot of online lessons. ...

Marjorie Brown, Roedean School, South Africa, Varkey teacher prize finalist

Teachers have relied on collaboration with colleagues to develop support systems while navigating the little-known terrain of online teaching and developing technical know-how. Support from colleagues in similar situations has proved to be important while developing online teaching skills. Professional development opportunities appeared to have more effectiveness when these built on or drew from professional collaborations between teachers. Some teachers point to the ongoing need for - and value of - the partnerships and collaborations developed during this phase. 

The strength of our professional community emerged in these early days, as colleagues supported one another making the transition, learning new instructional tools, and discussing how to support learning at a distance […]

 

Wendee White, 5th grade elementary school teacher, Syracuse, NY, United States

When the news arrived that schools would close, we really collaborated as a team. Teachers came together at school for a brief brainstorm session and started transforming the curriculum to an online one in just one day […] what makes it manageable is the fact that we are in it together. Teacher development has accelerated, and peer learning has been central to it […]

Anne-Fleur Lurvink, secondary school teacher, Rotterdam, the Netherlands

Another key factor that has emerged in teachers’ responses is the importance of partnerships and communication with parents in ensuring that children’s learning continues. Teachers displayed an awareness and understanding of the challenges faced by parents during the pandemic. This has led teachers to design strategies that involve parents and to encourage collaborative learning between students and parents, wherever feasible.

I help parents and family with tips and suggestions on how to organize the home study routine (offering practical examples) and how to increase the repertoire of activities…I also offer guidance on how to help students to understand whether they have managed to reach all the learning objectives.

 

Débora Garofalo, a technology teacher in the public education network and a technology manager at the São Paulo State Education Secretariat

Strong parent-teacher-child partnerships have been a tremendous asset to the success of online learning.

Wendee White, 5th grade elementary school teacher, Syracuse, NY, United States

Some teacher experiences have also highlighted the need for developing a cautious approach to adopting online learning. In under-resourced contexts and in schools that largely draw students from socio-economically disadvantaged sections of the population, teachers highlight the possibility that adopting online learning may exacerbate inequities in learning. This requires some planning to mitigate growing inequity such as making use of broadcast media or basic printed materials.

 

Some lessons for planning next steps

Teachers’ experiences vary depending on the country, type of school, subjects taught, access to technology/infrastructure and the socio-economic background of teachers and students. Nevertheless, three main lessons can be gleaned from the testimony shared.  

First, access to online learning infrastructure is crucial to ensure continued learning. Teachers with previous exposure to the use of online technology show a greater readiness to employ it. However, the transition to new teaching and learning methods has not been easy. Teachers have had to deal with challenges such as navigating different technologies and what they can offer, ensuring its suitability for their subject teaching, dealing with personal social and emotional challenges, and meeting the learning needs and socio-emotional needs of their students.

Second, teachers gained a good understanding of the learning needs of their students during the pandemic. This knowledge needs to inform the next steps in the educational response strategy. Teachers have placed at the forefront the needs of their students and addressed the contextual challenges faced by them to access online education or other learning opportunities. As countries plan strategies to assess and build on students’ learning in this phase, drawing on this awareness and knowledge will be crucial. In one of the experiences shared, for example, dialogue by the school involving teachers helped build their confidence and maintain continuity of learning for students.      

Third, several strategies and practices developed by teachers to cope with the demands of school closures, including their experiences using different technology platforms, can be harnessed and used to build the resilience of education systems. Two crucial practices that can be strengthened are building peer support networks, and establishing communication channels with parents to ensure their involvement in students’ learning.   

Listening to teacher experiences and ensuring that teachers’ concerns are adequately addressed – and teaching and learning strengthened – will be critical as countries move into the next phase of developing education responses to the pandemic.

Further reading: Supporting teachers in back-to-school efforts – A toolkit for school leaders

Blog
  • 04.06.2020

No electricity, no Internet, no online learning: Lara’s story

Shanghai, January 2020

I woke up one morning in the Chinese New Year holidays to find we were not going to return to school on February 3 as expected. Instead, we were told to prepare to teach online. As the pandemic spreads all over the world education has to reinvent itself rapidly. Teachers from all over the world have come together on social media to support each other and share experiences during these difficult times. But as I become more conversant with online teaching, my mind is still not at ease. I am one of the privileged ones lucky enough to have access to a huge number of resources. But how about those who are not so lucky? My thoughts were with the people in my home country, Mozambique, and other developing countries where the vast majority of the population has no access to electricity, let alone online learning.

 

Lara, a 13-year-old eighth grader, starts her day by helping the family with chores around the shack where they live instead of heading to school as she used to do before the terrifying pandemic. Lara and her family live in Manhiça, in the province of Maputo, Mozambique. She attends the Filipe Nyussi School in Maluana. Neither of Lara’s parents has completed primary education. Her father is the sole income provider and he earns about $45 per month, which he needs to manage carefully between food for the family and education for Lara and her seven brothers and sisters.

Despite the difficulties, Lara’s father says his dream is to see his daughter complete her education. He beams with pride as he describes Lara as a smart, passionate, and dedicated student. Sadly, he also expresses a lot of concern about the uncertain future.

Due to the pandemic, schools in Mozambique have closed. Lara’s daily routine has changed dramatically. She must stay at home while her father walks to school to collect school assignments. When he gets home after work, Lara completes the assignments and later submits them for the teachers to review and grade. Occasionally, her father has had to pick up assignments twice, paying up to 160 meticais (about USD 2.40).

Lara is very eager to learn. She is frustrated that while she would spend four  hours a day learning when she could go to school, her current routine only allows her to study for one hour a day. The family agrees that the current level of education is extremely weak, but unfortunately there is little they can do. They complain about the additional costs for the printed material.

Lara and her family have no access to electricity and consequently have no TV or Internet access at home. This type of situation is very common throughout the country. For this reason, schools have resorted to providing written material prepared by the teachers for students to study at home. Many other children in rural areas, especially girls, face similar challenges. While school is meant to be free, many have complained about the fees for the printed material. In addition, not going to school exposes young girls like Lara to hidden risks of premature marriages and/or pregnancies.

Private schools in urban areas are investing in online schooling for their pupils. However, the level of investment is not standardized and not consistent among schools. Some private schools are moving faster with online platforms and online classes to better meet the needs of their students. Nevertheless, they also rely on parents’ willingness or financial ability to invest in access to technology such as Internet connectivity, computers, and mobile devices.

Studies have shown that the quality of education in Mozambique lags behind that of its neighboring countries and the level of school retention for young girls in the country is still a challenge. On top of that, the country also struggles to provide proper training for its teachers.

Online education is not a feasible option in a country where most people have no access to the Internet. While teachers from all over the world get together in social media to collaborate and give education a face-lift, some teachers and schools in less privileged countries are forgotten.

Nadya Faquir

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This piece is part of the Teacher Task Force’s #TeachersVoices campaign, created to bring forward the experiences of teachers working every day to ensure their students continue to benefit from a quality education despite the COVID-19 pandemic. To participate, go to our dedicated webpage.

Blog
  • 02.06.2020

Using technology to teach the remote classroom due to Covid-19

In Brazil, where I teach primary and secondary school, 82% of students are in public schools. Due to regional social differences, some of us have to deal with adverse situations. But all regions face related problems and connect in different ways.

I work in a community of extreme poverty, with few resources. Together with teacher colleagues, I have mapped out the best way to work with these students, in view of their social and economic reality. Infrastructure and connectivity resources are lacking, but most families have mobile devices, such as cell phones.

We conducted and made available a study guide to be carried out at home with printed curricular guidelines so that parents could withdraw their children from school at alternate times, so as not to create agglomerations that would pose a danger due to Covid-19. The guidelines included information about the platforms that would be used, such as WhatsApp and social networks, including a Facebook group that we already had for all the classes in the school.

So, in addition to the printed guidelines sent to homes, I started using WhatsApp and Facebook with my classes to disseminate short videos. The videos give them guidance to carry out activities, such as work on various topics from digital literacy to computational thinking and problem-solving skills, but also socio-emotional skills, such as creativity, self-management and self-care.

I proposed to the students some reflections and suggestions for hands-on activities. For example, we made a mechanical hand. I made a sequence of short videos, talking about creativity, telling the story of Leonardo da Vinci and also of sustainability , and the three Rs (recycle, reduce and reuse). Another video talked about the importance of the mechanical hand for industry, saving lives and giving quality of life to people who have lost limbs. Finally, I encouraged them to create a robotic hand using cardboard, string and glue, with a hashtag to post a photo on the Facebook group when the work was done.

WhatsApp also works as a channel to clear up doubts, so I organized daily schedules for my students to let them know when I am available to remedy difficulties and clarify points. This has been effective in helping students to continue their studies.

In addition to my work as a teacher, I write two columns on education in major media. I have used this moment to write to teachers and educational managers about using technology to teach, pointing out information about tools such as Google Classroom, Zoom, Blackboard, Century Tech, and EkStep, among others. I have also written about planning, about designing and applying activities, about assessment and hybrid teaching. I have also provided guidance for class recordings, on topics such as voice intonation, didactic sequence, time, cell phone handling, sound and light, as the vast majority have prepared classes without interactions, only with forums.

I help parents and family with tips and suggestions on how to organize the home study routine (offering practical examples) and how to increase the repertoire of activities. I show them the importance of creating lists of books, films and virtual places, such as museums. I also offer guidance on how to help students to understand whether they have managed to reach all the learning objectives, with such questions as:

  • Does the exercise that I got wrong have to do with the content of the previous learning?
  • Was there any factor that took my attention away from studies?
  • Did I understand the question?
  • Did I answer what was asked?
  • Did I study the whole topic?

This is a period of new learning for all, in which it is necessary to learn from each other, to listen and find ways to overcome difficulties.

 

Débora Garofalo is a technology teacher in the public education network and a technology manager at the São Paulo State Education Secretariat. She is an education columnist, a winner of national awards and was in the top 10 of the Varkey Foundation's Global Teacher Prize 2019.

**********************************************************

This piece is part of the Teacher Task Force’s #TeachersVoices campaign, created to bring forward the experiences of teachers working every day to ensure their students continue to benefit from a quality education despite the COVID-19 pandemic. To participate, go to our dedicated webpage.