Over 22 schools in the Bangsamoro region are reaping the benefits of digital learning after being recipients of Smart Communications’ (Smart) School-in-a-Bag packages.
For grade school teacher Alamina Bao, it is uncommon for children in their far-flung community of Lanao del Sur to be exposed to technology. Most of her students in Ragayan Elementary School are not even familiar with watching television, as their parents are constantly on the lookout for threats of armed conflict in their area.
After receiving School-in-a-Bag digital portable classrooms in 2018, the kits’ modern learning tools and educational content have allowed Bao and her pupils to connect with technology and be open to innovations that could enhance education and uplift the quality of life for children everywhere.
“After experiencing technology first hand, my students are now more excited to go to school every day,” the educator said.
Each School-in-a-Bag comes with a teacher’s laptop and tablet, LED TV, solar panel and battery, Smart pocket Wi-Fi, and student tablets that are pre-loaded with literacy applications, multimedia resources, and disaster preparedness videos. More than just receiving gadgets though, Bao specifies that the donations are useful because of the Learn Smart educational content that is pre-installed in each student tablet.
“Learning has become enjoyable for them, thanks to these apps,” she said. The five literacy apps developed by Smart in partnership with the Department of Education (DepEd) and local stakeholders, colleges and universities include the Bahay Kubo Filipino app, Kaalam Cebuano app, Taallam and Tahderiyyah Arabic apps, and Matigsalug app for the Matigsalug tribe of Davao and Bukidnon. More apps are set to be launched in 2019.
Hasmin Macud, a teacher of Alternative Learning System (ALS) in Marawi City, is grateful at how the Learn Smart apps have helped enhance her teaching.
The educator attests to how the Tahderriyah and T’allam apps guide her in the more accurate pronunciation of certain Arabic words. “Not all of us are articulate enough with extensive knowledge of the Arabic language,” she admitted.
“These well-developed apps ensure that our students learn Arabic words and sayings precisely, and more than what us teachers can share to them during class hours,” Macud explained.