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Sunday, June 16, 2024

Filipino teachers on adjusting to distance learning

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The sudden shift to distance learning has had teachers scrambling for urgent solutions to efficiently and effectively teach their students, who are also grappling with the changes. 

Filipino educators work double time to upskill and equip themselves with the digital tools and alternatives (e.g. using DIY mirrors to show their notes to their class). 

“Being equipped with the right tools to teach 21st century learners is the responsibility of every teacher across the country, as this is our sworn obligation to uphold our nation’s goals and create a better future for our next generations,” said Sarah Mae Columnas, a teacher from Mansasa National High School in Bohol. 

Several FIlipino teachers take advantage of free platforms available to help them efficiently and effectively teach their students.

Columnas takes advantage of free platforms available such as Canva for Education, a product designed for educational institutions catering to K-12. 

It offers thousands of templates and a library of premium royalty-free images, as well as features intended to facilitate simultaneous collaboration between students and teachers in the classroom or remotely. 

“I encouraged one of my colleagues to use Canva for Education as well and walked her through the process. We have come to realize that it is truly a gift to Filipino teachers,” shared Columnas.

Another huge challenge educators face today is migrating everything they use in their classroom to a digital setting. There’s also the task of adding variety to their teaching repertoire and curriculum, to ensure lessons remain just as engaging as in a physical setting. 

Michelle Brabante, school director of Minido Preschool in Marinduque, said she uses Canva for Education to create video lessons for her students using the platform’s talking presentations feature. 

“The students really respond well to our talking presentations; it makes them happy, they feel more connected to us educators, and they’re certainly more engaged with the content we go through,” she shared.

The platform also features a range of Classroom Kits, inspired by real-life physical classroom set-ups, which come with templates, illustrations, and photos. 

VIRTUAL VISUALS. A product designed for K-12 teachers, Canva for Education offers thousands of templates, access to images and illustrations, themed classroom set-ups, and a collaboration space that allow educators to make distance learning as engaging as in a physical setting.

To enable collaboration among the whole class, Canva for Education also includes a collaboration space, a review workflow, access to content from Google Drive, Dropbox, Folders, version history, and SSO with Clever and Google. 

“We like working together, and we love that Canva for Education allows us to do our tasks as a team,” added Brabante. 

It also includes add-ons such as education-specific content, enables the creation of captivating videos, and allows access to Giphys, over 2 million images, 800,000 icons and illustrations, over 700 fonts, YouTube integrations, and QR codes. 

Ryan Alvin Torrejos, teacher from German European School Manila, shared, “I know I will still be using Canva for Education for many years to come, even when students are allowed back into their physical classrooms. I am always recommending it to all my co-teachers, and all the other teachers I know.”

K-12 teachers in the Philippines may visit www.canva.com/education to sign-up for free Canva for Education account.

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