When the coronavirus disease was declared a global pandemic, Ateneo de Davao University immediately responded by preparing to hold classes online.
For several weeks, university officials, professors, and programmers met online to discuss and develop tools that would be needed by both students and teachers so that learning could continue while schools were closed. Teachers prepared instructional content in digital and video format, while student government officials helped in the dissemination of details to their schoolmates.
The university’s experience since 2013 of using the digital platform as one of its learning modes also helped students and teachers readily shift to online instruction for their summer classes on April 22, following the implementation of enhanced community quarantine in the region.
The students and their teachers met via Google Classroom and Moodle, and used social media, videoconferencing, and chat apps to communicate with each other. At home, their laptops, tablets, and mobile devices were connected to a reliable internet source.
“With the Covid-19 pandemic, people have to get used to a different way of interacting with one another. Through the internet, students have more freedom to think deeply about the learning material and do the tasks needed to accomplish their learning goals,” said AdDU executive vice president Jeremy S. Eliab.
Davao Christian High School encountered the same difficulty when it had to stop its classes six weeks before the end of its academic year. Like Ateneo, DCHS had also planned ahead.
Teachers were trained on the use of Google Classroom, and accounts for students were set up. The school had also been using the Dynamic Learning Program, where students answer questions on worksheets based on discussed lessons, helping them continue their classes even with minimal teacher intervention.
“Our online classes are far from perfect but I am very much encouraged with the discipline, hard work, and understanding our students and teachers have shown. The parents have also been very helpful in supporting the kids’ learning from home,” said Desi Dario Magnaye, junior high school principal of DCHS V. Mapa Campus.