How to Ensure Learner Safety in Online Learning and in Hybrid Set-up

Two years into the pandemic, the landscape of education has never been the same. Having to teach online, one of the biggest concerns is security, especially for our learners.  So why do we value it in the first place? Because we value data and information. We want our students to be safe, to ensure continuity in learning even online. This also applies even if we do a hybrid or face-to-face setup since we would still continue using online learning tools and gadgets in our schools.

But this would also mean that there are vulnerabilities and vulnerabilities lead to exploits. In the past years, attacks have been relentless. There’s cyberbullying, zoombombers and hackers, and malware attacks.

The question stands, “how do we ensure learners’ safety in online learning?”

P.I.E Framework (Key points) :

  • Policies
  • Infrastructure
  • Education

POLICIES- it is the course of action and guidelines that we should follow in order to ensure learner safety.

1. Review your country’s policy. (In the Philippines, we have the Data Privacy act, Cybercrime Law, and Child Protection Policy.)

 2. Review your school’s policies as well if these are aligned with the existing laws. If there are none, teachers and stakeholders can lobby for laws to ensure learner safety in online learning. Schools can then tailor fit their policies that are aligned with the national policies and their context. 

INFRASTRUCTURE- is the backbone of education and technology. By improving infrastructure such as devices, network connections, and safety features, we add extra layers of protection for students.

1. Recommend specs for devices used by students.. 

2. Make an inventory on efficient and appropriate apps and websites for classes. 

3. Enable security features of software and device. Use external technologies like MDM or Mobile Device Management to manage the screen time and the devices of the learners. Using MDM, teachers get to restrict designated apps during synchronous sessions. In this way, students are guaranteed to focus in class and not get distracted by other external apps that are not needed during class. Parents can also avail its services so they can monitor and restrict the screen time of their children so students can balance their school-leisure time. 

EDUCATION- Digital citizenship and learner safety should be staple topics that should be integrated into the curriculum and be taught in workshops.

1. All stakeholders of educators should be learn and apply digital citizenship. We can partner with computer teachers and school formators through modules. There are also free resources like BeInternetAwesome.com for students to go through. Security topics are discussed like not sharing passwords, not putting sensitive information online, talking to strangers in the internet, and other practical ways to protect one’s identity online. 

2. We should strengthen home-school partnership which is a collective effort to monitor and guide students how to navigate the online world

3. We should work together with school formators co-educators to create an ecosystem of safe and secure learning environment through providing socio-emotional support for students and proper-handling of incidents such as academic dishonesty and cyberbullying.

As adults tasked to protect the security of our students, we must do work-arounds and strategies based on improving these 3 key points in order to ensure learner safety in online learning and hybrid set-up.

Special thanks to: T4 Education founder Vikas Pota and staff, Moderators Andria Zafirakou and Jim Tuscano, and my co-winners Ana Elicker from Brazil and Candelaria Durruty from Argentina

Pagtuturo ng Filipino gamit ang KKK Framework: Kultura, Kabutihang-Asal, at Kasaysayan

Sa panahon ngayon ng impormasyon at kasagsagan ng pandemya, paano natin maihuhubog at maikintal sa ating mga mag-aaral ang identidad na Filipino nang sa gayon ay mamahalin nila hindi lamang ang wika, kundi ang pagiging Filipino?        

Ayon kay Sionil F. Jose, pambansang alagad ng sining sa panitikan, hindi sapat ang pagkanta lamang ng Pambansang awit, o pag-aalala kay rizal at mga bayani, dahil outward manifestations lamang ito. Kaya rin siguro kapag nagtuturo tayo ng Filipino, huwag lamang mga pakitang-tao o outward manifestations ang ating paraan. Halimbawa, imbes na magpagkanta lamang ng pambansang awit, magkaroon ng DEEP dive o malalim at makabuluhang pagsusuri at interkasyon sa nilalaman tulad ng mga pagninilay at pagsusuri sa nilalaman ng Pambansang Awit at ang kahalagahan nito sa ating kasaysayan at bansa.

Ano nga ba ang identidad na Filipino?

Ayon kay Prop. Xiao Chua- propesor at historiador, (isang napakagandang sanggunian para sa Filipino at Araling panlipunan ang Lahi.ph sa Youtube) imbento raw ang Filipino bilang isang nasyunal at pulitikal na konsepto. Bakit? Kung tutuusin, ang kamalayang Filipino ay nagmula sa  kolonyal. Ang salitang Filipino ay mula sa pangalan ni Haring Felipe na hari ng Espanya noong panahon na pinangalanan ang mga kapuluan ng Filipinas.

Sabi naman ni Jose Rizal, ang pagiging Filipino at nasyunalismo ay hindi batay sa dugo, o kulay ng balat dahil ang pagiging Filipino ay nasyon na tumutulong sa isa’t isa, nasyon ay may damdaming nasyunal, batay rin ito sa mga sinulat nila Rizal sa kanyang mga nobela at mga propagandista na bahagi ng la liga Filipina.

Ayon naman kay Andres Bonifacio na isinulat nila Jacinto sa Kartilya ng Katipunan, ang pagiging Filipino ay pagbibigay halaga sa pagkakaisa ng puso at damdamin ng lahat at pagwasak ng kamangmangan, may hustisya at kaliwanagan ang sambayanan

Paano natin ituro ang identidad na Filipino sa ating mga mag-aaral?

Sa ganitong mga pananaw, mas malalim ang pag-unawa at pagyakap natin sa ating pagiging Filipino. Kaya naman bilang mga guro sa Filipino, tayo ang magmumulat, magkikintal, magpatutuklas ng identidad ng pagiging Filipino ng ating mga mag-aaral. Gamit ang KKK Framework, maaari itong sandigan at angkla ng mga guro upang maging makabuluhan at maka-Filipino ang ating mga kurikulum at lalo na ang ating school culture.

Narito ang ilan sa mga output ng mga mag-aaral sa Filipino na sumailalim sa yunit na ito:

Baguhin na natinang pagtanaw sa asignaturang Filipino bilang asignatura lamang, o wika ng mga tagalog. Sa pagtuturo ng Filipino, tayo ay may:

A. Ginagampanan na papel na isa sa mga tagataguyod ng kultura at damdaming nasyunal nag Filipino

B. Nagpatitibay ng mga pundasyon ng pagkakaisa, lohika, hustisya at kaliwanagan sa bayan

C.Nagpauunawang mga pagdurusa- hindi lamang ang pag-sensationalize at romanticize ng resilience at pagdurusa, kundi pagkakaroon ng kritikal na pag-iisip, accountability sa mga namumuno sa atin, at sa ating mga sarili, at paghahanap ng kaginhawaan sa lahat.

Maraming salamat sa pagbasa ng blog na ito at mabuhay ang gurong Filipino!

Para sa kabuuang webinar tungkol rito, panoorin po ito mula sa REX Bookstore FB Page

XStart-up: Kung Paano Naging Arkitekto ng Disenyo ang mga Xaverian

Research. Ito ang salitang madaling sabihin at madalas iparatang sa kapwa bilang pantapal kapag nakikipagtalastasan online, ngunit sa totoo lang, hindi gaanong malawak ang kaalaman ng mga mag-aaral sa kasanayang ito. Marami pa rin ang nabibiktima ng misinformation at disinformation. Marami pa rin ang hindi sanay na kumilatis sa mga impormasyon na nababasa at napapanood sa internet.

Bagamat nakalatag ito sa iba’t ibang MELC’s (Most Essential Learning Competencies) ng iba’t ibang asignatura ng Kagawaran ng Edukasyon, kailangan pa ring mas paigtingin ang pagtuturo ng pananaliksik, kaakibat ang STEM na pinapahalagahan ang agham, teknolohiya, engineering, at matematika.  Hindi rin nakagugulat na bahagi rin ito ng Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao. Ito’y dahil ang pananaliksik ay hindi lamang pagtuklas ng kaalaman, kundi pagtuklas din ng katotohanan. Taon-taong bahagi ng asignaturang Filipino sa Baitang 6 ng Paaralang Xavier ang pagpapakilala ng mga payak na elemento ng pananaliksik sa mga mag-aaral, ngunit iba ang pinaghuhugutan ngayon kung bakit itinuturo ito dahil kailangang labanan ang pandemya ng mali at pekeng impormasyon. Nang nagkaroon ng pandemya, hindi lamang virus ang kalaban.

Sa kabilang banda, kamakailan ay nanalasa ang Bagyong Odette sa Visayas at Mindanao kaya napapanahon lamang na isama sa pagtuturo ng pananaliksik ang mga konsepto ng sustainability at stewardship sa mga mag-aaral.  Bilang tugon sa Laudato si’ mula sa Santo Papa, hinimok nito na baguhin ang kurikulum at ihanda ang mga mag-aaral na maging katiwala at tagapangalaga ng mundong ito.

Ginamit ang Design Thinking bilang estratehiya ng pananaliksik at pag-iisip ng solusyon, narito ang naging proseso sa aming mga aralin sa ikaanim na baitang sa Filipino:

Proseso ng Design Thinking

1. Panayam- Napanood ng mga mag-aaral ang panayam kay Nanay Elizabeth na biktima ng Bagyong Odette sa San Juan, Southern Leyte. Nasira ang kanyang bahay at maging mga bahay sa kanyang komunidad. Sinuri ng mga mag-aaral ang mga naging karanasan at kalagayan ng mga taong dinamayan nila.

2. Pagtalakay ng U.N. SDG’s o United Nations’ Sustainability Development Goals-Iniugnay ng mga mag-aaral ang karanasan ni Nanay Elizabeth sa mga pandaigdigang adhikain na nagsisilbing blueprint ng mga bansa upang makamit ang tinatawag na sustainability. Nakatulong ito sa mga mag-aaral upang makaisip ng mga ideya na makamit ang SDG’s kung saan hango ang design challenge na ibinigay sa klase. Halimbawa: “Paano magdisenyo ng mura pero typhoon-proof na bahay?”

 3. Pagsulat ng Empathy Map at Concept Map- Ginamit ang mga ito upang makakalap ng datos at mas mauunawaan ng mga mag-aaral ang karanasan, damdamin, at kaugalian ng mga tao na dumanas ng suliranin.

 4. Pakikinig sa Eksperto- Nakinig naman ang mga mag-aaral sa isang inhinyero na si Engr. Fatima Ang na nagpaliwanag tungkol sa disaster-resilient housing upang makatulong sa pag-iisip ng sarili nilang disenyo.

 5. Pagpapabuti ng disenyo kasama ang mga mentor na guro- Maliban sa palagiang gawain sa breakout rooms kung saan nagkaroon ng kolaborasyon at pag-uusap ang mga mag-aaral, minabuti ring mag-imbita ng ibang mga guro mula sa iba’t ibang kagawaran para magbigay ng payo at mga komento para mas mapahusay ang mga disenyo ng bahay ng bawat pangkat.

 6. Repleksyon at pagsulat ng papel-panukala- Mahalaga na mahusay nilang mabuo ang disenyo at masolusyunan ang design challenge na ibinigay, ngunit mas mahalaga pa rin ang nangyaring mabusising proseso ng kabuuan ng pananaliksik. Sa kanilang papel-panukala, nahasa ang kanilang kasanayan sa pagsusulat sa Filipino at pangangatwiran upang mapalitaw ang rationale ng kanilang naging disenyo. Isa pa ay nasanay sila sa paggamit ng mga ekspresyon sa pagpapahayag ng sariling pananaw at wastong gamit ng mga pangatnig sa paglalahad.

Mga Exemplar na Disenyo ng mga Mag-aaral:

(May kalayaan ang mga mag-aaral kung anong apps ang kanilang ginamit sa pagbuo ng sariling mga disenyo.)

Narito naman ang mga mahuhusay na halimbawa ng disenyo ng bahay mula sa iba’t ibang pangkat ng Baitang 6 sa ilalim ng pamatnubay nina G. Nico Fos at G. Roger Salvador, at sa pamumuno ni Gng. Joyce Imperio.

Naging susi ang kanilang mga aralin sa Science dahil nagamit nila ang kanilang kaalaman sa mga sakuna at paghahanda ng mga dapat gawin para rito. Mas napahusay ang kanilang pag-iisip ng ideya kung paano gawing typhoon-proof ang isang bahay. Nagamit din nila ang kanilang kaalaman sa simple machines bilang bahagi ng kanilang disenyo ng bahay. Isang halimbawa ay paggamit ng mga ramp upang maging inklusibo ito sa mga may kapansanan at matatanda tulad ni Nanay Elizabeth na naging sentro ng kanilang pananaliksik. Naglagay ang ilan sa kanila ng mga mekanismo na rust-proof upang maiwasan ang pagkakaroon ng kalawang sa mga materyales ng bahay.

Simple man o at limitado lang ang mga teknikal na aspekto ng kanilang ginawa, at hindi tuluyang magagamit ng komunidad, tiyak na napagsama nila ang kanilang mga kaalaman sa iba’t ibang asignatura at nagamit nila ang wikang Filipino sa isang akademiko at malalim na diskurso. Sa kanilang pagdanas sa proseso ng saliksik, naranasan nila ang pagtuklas ng kaalaman, katotohanan, at lalong-lalo na ang kabutihan para sa kapwa.

How Pixar’s “Soul” Reminded Us About Finding One’s Purpose

If you happened to watch the latest Pixar’s gem, “Soul”, then you’d know it is indeed good for the soul. (pun intended) Here are 5 lessons that we can take away from it and how it reminded us about finding one’s purpose. (Warning: This article contains some spoilers ahead!)

Your passions and traits make up who you are. But this doesn’t mean you are only defined by the things that are important to you. Like in the movie, the things we are passionate about make up a chunk of our personality and we do have that one special passion that inspires us to move forward in life, that is our spark.

Mentorship and sandboxes are important. For us to find our spark, we find inspiration in everything, like the things we love to do or the persons we look up to, for example is our mentors. It is a healthy relationship between mentor and mentees, sharing and passing along knowledge and guidance to be successful in the field. At times, our mentors can help us find our spark.

However, in Filipino culture, there is what we call Padrino System where one gains favor or a promotion by means of family affiliation or friendship, and not because that person is capable and competent. We need to veer away from this kind of system and create a mentorship culture especially in our workplaces and institutions.

In the Kdrama “Start-up”, startup companies had mentors to guide them as they ventured into business and idea-based solutions and were never afraid to try new things because they had Sandbox, a fictional safe place, something like a Google Campus, where they can learn, collaborate, experiment, fail or succeed. Like a sandbox, they were not worried to fail and fall on a hard ground, because they knew that Sandbox is their cushion so they would not get hurt. But there is no Sandbox in the real world. What we can do though, is to define and create our own sandboxes—-places and people who support us no matter what such as a community built in the workplace, friends and families.

Being in the zone shows our strengths and weaknesses too. Have you ever felt joy while finishing a module with ease? How about doing so good in playing a video game or a sport and that gave you immense excitement? That’s what it means about being in the zone. People find joy and bliss while in the zone because they are doing something very skillfully and easily. 

One character from the movie then asked, “But, what if that joy becomes an obsession?” If I may add, what if it becomes a source of anxiety and exhaustion, which gives us a feeling that we aren’t our best anymore? All these feelings and mental states lead to burnout.

Recovery is the key against burnout. When we can’t control our passions anymore, sometimes they consume and burn us out . According to Rahaf Harfoush, a digital anthropologist, there’s also a pandemic-induced burnout magnified by a culture of overwork, distraction of internet and social media, and prolonged lockdown.

Few tips from experts to recover from burnout or prevent it too:

  • Pay attention to discomfort.
  • Recovery is as valuable as work.
  • Give yourselves time and self-care.

Your IKIGAI is something only you can define. In the Philippines, a famous coffee commercial boldy asks, “Para kanino ka bumabangon?” (To whom do you wake up for?) For me, this is a good reminder about inspiration, but sometimes, this question tends to be overly-romantacized and just disregards the other factors on why we are doing things and just continue living anyway.

Unlike in Japan, there is a concept called, “IKIGAI” meaning a reason for being. “IKI” literally means life and “GAI” means purpose. It originated from Okinawa, the birthplace of KARATE. Interestingly, it is also the place with the most number of 100 year-olds alive. The discipline of Karate and life expectancy of Okinawans tell us something about living a purposeful life through finding your ikigai.

As my organization say, it is a sweet spot, an intersection of profession, passion, mission, and vocation. Some may argue that the ikigai diagram is not accurate and just a western misrepresentation of Japan’s ikigai, but I do believe that this can be just your sample treasure map in finding your own’s purpose. At the end of the day, it is us who will define how are we gonna live our lives and find our purpose.

Sometimes we get caught up and focus too much on the idea of “para kanino ka bumabangon?”. When we always look at the big picture, we forget the little things that matter which can eventually lead us to a lifetime of joy. It’s okay for us to take a step back from our dream and enjoy the little things in life and to live life every minute of it.

“Pour your time and passion into what brings you the most joy, your mission in life”.

Marie Kondo , tidying expert

The Power of Stories: Finding Hope in these Trying Times

Last month, through EmpowerED live discussion, I had the opportunity to talk to Jim and his amazing friend Elisa Guerra, along her daughter Ana Rogu. They are a writer-illustrator/mom & daughter duo who made the book Hope Where Are You, an anthology of stories from 6 children around the world who are coping and finding hope in this pandemic.

This is a non-verbatim transcript of my answers during the live discussion:

Live Discussion with Jim, Elisa and Ana

How does storytelling help to develop literacy skills and guide students to practice empathy?

When we look at our ancestors, they used orature to transmit learning, culture, traditions, and even entertainment. And that still rings true up to this day. We are using storytelling for same prurposes,  and as a crucial way of developing literacy skills: for example it enhances their vocabulary, listening skills, reading and understanding, among others. In these difficult times, telling our stories is needed more than ever. My mentor before has always told us that literature is the reflection of society: and telling and learning these kinds of stories is a gateway that would help our students understand the society they’re in, help them touch with our own roots and culture, and developing their emotions, feelings, and even empathy towards others. 

This can be done when we teach them how to empathize with the characters and make connections, understand themes and morals, appreciate  reading : all these things can contribute to their lifelong values growing up and may affect how they see the world.

What are the challenges in translating the book into Filipino? How can teachers make use of the book in their literature classes?

The challenges in translating the book is that the english language structure is different from Filipino. The semantics, the words have varied meanings in the language, and so, when we were trying to translate the words and the stories there is always a dilemma on how much we localize and contextualize the words without really removing the voice of the characters and its original authors. 

Another thing is that the cultural aspect of the book, for example: the names of food like chapati, or different traditions like child marriage,  yoga, and these things and concepts should be properly represented and explained in the translated version of the book. Nevertheless, Jim and I  really enjoyed translating and this is a testament on how rich our language is and this work made me appreciate our translators snd teachers because translating is not just work, but a work of art.

Filipino teachers can use this book as a reading material to develop reading comprehension:  because number 1. It is timely and relevant, it speaks about the pandemic and different cultures of coping in the eyes of children 2. It speaks about hope, resilience, mental health, and call to action which can also inspire, be learned and replicated in their own lives . This can also be used as a source material for authentic assessments, by teaching our students how to empathize to the characters, tell their own stories of hope, and create solutions which are also applicable in their own lives.

How can we further help children and the youth in coping with the pandemic?

We can help children cope with this pandemic by designing learning continuity programs that are sustainable and are based on the contexts and needs of our students. All teachers should be reading teachers, it is macro-skill that can be used across multiple disciplines and so in these trying times, let’s prioritize developing literacy skills and utilizing literatures that would enable them to develop empathy, social-emotional learning skills, and self care even if they are just at home. Let’s make reading a safe haven for our students to go beyond the four corners of their homes and reduce the loneliness and anxiety brought about this pandemic. By helping them appreciate reading, they learn more about themselves and the world.

Just like in these stories, the youth needed adults and people who would take good care of them, and trust them, and at the same time , empower them to do great things even if they are still young.

BONUS: Along with my best of friends from TITSERYA, we made a live storytelling of the book that teachers can use as their teaching material or can simply be enjoyed by both young and adults.

Pag-asa Nasaan ka Livestorytelling by Titserya

Teaching & Technology

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