The Academic in the Pandemic

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3 years ago
Topics: Experience, Random

Due to the pandemic, most of the companies that provide services have gone to online transactions - even schools, from traditional face-to-face classes, we were challenged to meet the demands of online distance learning or ODL.

First, I would like to discuss what are the differences among these three types of learning modality - distance learning, online learning, and online distance learning.

DL vs. OL vs. ODL

Distance Learning (DL) is a type of learning that happens when the students and teachers are not meeting at a particular place and a particular time. Distance learning usually makes use of learning modules. A learning module is a tool/material that is prepared by the teacher. It is arranged in a logical and sequential manner which can guide the students through the content and assessments/evaluation. This can be given out to students through print or can be given online.

Online Learning (OL) is a type of learning that uses digital technology, particularly the Internet. This is often called e-learning but is more commonly thought to be under the umbrella of distance learning, however, OL can also be done simultaneously in a classroom (e.g. Teacher asks the students to perform a WebQuest activity where students visit a website to perform activities and answer questions pertinent to the lesson.

Online Distance Learning (ODL) is a type of learning that uses the Internet to supervise learning whether synchronously or asynchronously. This type of learning is a fusion of the previously mentioned types of learning setup or modality. ODL is what my school adapted to use during the pandemic because the primary reason is the safety of the students and employees as we are all staying at home.

ODL is also divided into two types - synchronous learning where the teacher and students meet online at a particular schedule. This is usually done to the lower grade levels as they are the very ones that need maximum supervision with the need to practice routine through repetition. Moreover, they also need more interaction with their teacher and peers through visual and verbal communication. The other type of ODL which is asynchronous learning happens when the students learn content through a thoroughly designed module in any place, at any given time as long as they meet the deadline of tasks, as stated in the module. Asynchronous sessions are more appropriate to higher grade levels as it is important for them to practice independence in learning. Here's a list of the advantages of both synchronous and asynchronous learning:

I personally would recommend a good amount of both types of learning, especially to high school learners, as they are in need of the feeling of connectedness, urgent and immediate feedback, rapport-building, and collaboration. They also need a good amount of asynchronous classes because they should be able to practice independence and responsibility on their own learning. This supposedly would engage them to be disciplined and resourceful as they learn the content.

Schooling in Pandemic

Surely, this pandemic has caught us all off-guard. We didn't even realize that the last time that we will be physically seeing our friends, classmates, and teachers in school will be last year. This pandemic has caught the teachers off-guard for they have to learn to deliver through online distance learning and be able to come up with fun ways to engage the learners taking into account the ultimate goal of making the students learn through every task that is required of them.

So, if you are a student who is struggling to juggle your homework, performance tasks, quizzes, seatwork, research paper, and the like... remember that you're not alone who is struggling - the other side of the screen that you see during the synchronous sessions also feels anxious, tired, and sleepy, just as you are. Despite it all, they still continue to deliver and make themselves better for you.

If you are a teacher just like me who is feeling unmotivated, frustrated, tired, unappreciated, and all the other feels... please remember that I feel you and I am here for you. Always bear in mind that it is okay to pause for a while, take a break, sleep soundly, and then face the battle again. You don't have to feel guilty if you watch an episode or two of a Netflix show, before checking your student's work. It's normal, it's understandable, and I know that you are responsible - that you will be able to accomplish what you have set to do. So, take it easy. It shall come to pass.

I've discussed the many faces/types of learning modalities in the first section. Each is unique in its own way, but whatever modality you're using right now... if you're a student, please be serious about it, do your tasks with a happy heart, have the thirst for learning and learning more, think that your teachers worked hard just to give you a learning experience that you will never forget. If you're a teacher, I know you can't do anything about it because you're just an employee. But please know that whatever you do, do it excellently. If you're a seasoned teacher, be open to learning about teaching with the use of technology - I know it ain't easy, but slowly, with the help of your child or friends, you will get there and be able to discover and unravel the wonders of ODL. If you are a new teacher, I know you're scared - despite being confident of using technology, you are afraid if you're doing the right thing. I know you need validation at times, please know that you just have to do your very best, and if in any case, you're not sure of what to do next, you will always have a mentor to talk to, or friends to ask from. Teachers, you are not alone. We are in this together, and by togetherness, we will win this and ace the academic in the pandemic.

Thank you for reading!

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Avatar for rayselp
3 years ago
Topics: Experience, Random