Months in as the Learning & Development Lead at PACE, I’ve had the chance to manage the identification, coordination and implementation of learning initiatives and programs to ensure that our fellows develop skills, knowledge and capability to become global citizens and changemakers. We have been running bi-weekly trainings for our fellows who volunteer in our partner public primary schools.
Meeting these young adults every session has been thrilling and rejuvenating and even though we experience challenges, we quickly look for ways to adjust. Now we have the Corona Virus Pandemic and life and learning still need to go on. New measures of learning have to be taken up and a lot of sensitization on how to stay innovative and safe at the same time has to be done.
What new learning methods can we adopt? How best should we adopt these new ways of learning? Should we then have this as a practical plan for the future, even in the public primary schools that we work with? This drastic change gives us a glimpse of how education could evolve and diversify. Recent footage by Aljazeera portrays how some countries have been forced to quickly adapt to virtual learning as schools continue to shut down as a preventive measure so as not to spread the Corona Virus.
As we strategize on virtual learning opportunities to train our fellows, now that we can’t meet them physically, we are faced with the question of inclusivity. For some, it could be an easier option but for others, they might just have to struggle a little more to benefit from this experience. From access to technological gadgets, internet and day to day distractions, there might be a blend of new opportunities but also challenges with virtual learning.
Looking at the underserved schools we work with and where our fellows volunteer, the question of whether to adopt virtual learning becomes a bigger problem. So far, the Kenya Institute of Curriculum and Development (KICD) has come up with a radio time-table for children in different grades to tune in during learning sessions – a friendlier way of integrating learning methods. Kenya recently introduced the CBC curriculum, part of it including Digital literacy. But how many schools and homes are equipped for this? Doesn’t this then mean we even have a greater push for digital literacy all over the world? The Corona Virus has changed or will change three key things in education; How millions around the world access education, new solutions for classroom dynamics, and lastly, new shifts in education approaches that could widen equality gaps considering the digital divide.
“What you are passionate about frustrates you and invigorates you at the same time. This is because passion keeps you going and keeps you on check to improve every day, whether you get demotivated or not.”– Ami Doshi Shah, Kenyan Jeweller
Learning & Development Lead