The College adapts to the educational reality posed by the coronavirus thanks to its technological tools, the effort of teachers and students and the involvement of families.
For a little over a month and a half, the routines of the students and teachers of the School San FernandoLike those of many other children and adults, they have changed in an unimaginable way before the start of the alarm state. They have gone from getting up early to go to 'school', from learning and teaching in the classroom sharing the experience with classmates, to having to do it from home. The change came from one day to the next and caused many uncertainties, but our educational community has shown that it is prepared for the challenge of offering an alternative way of education in these circumstances of learning from the family environment.
The success of the model promoted by the College is based on three pillars. The first, appropriate planning by the management and teaching team to awaken the motivation and commitment of the students. The second, the support and collaboration of families with this teaching model. And the third, the use of appropriate technological tools for these objectives, a section in which our condition as a Google Reference Center has been highlighted.
"Our teachers have adapted to deliver distance learning in record time, demonstrating their enormous dedication, passion and professionalism, with no time restrictions," highlights our academic director, Carmen Bueno. In fact, the hours spent preparing for classes and homework have doubled. Primary education teachers meet daily by videoconference, some days up to twice, and are fully coordinated to carry out the tasks. ESO and Bachillerato meet weekly with both department heads and teachers at the same level, and are in continuous contact via email. "Furthermore, we are fortunate to have a student body that is responding very positively to this circumstance, and of course, with families from whom we are receiving great collaboration and support," emphasizes Carmen Bueno.
As usual, the first days were the most complicated. However, the situation soon returned to normal. Teachers design tasks and provide resources for students to explore and learn: prerecorded classes, videos, audios, performance tasks ... They also teach classes in real time, with the whole group or in small groups. This allows students to make inquiries, receive feedback on assignments, and share opinions with their peers. As a complement to school assignments, every week students and families are offered different challenges, playful suggestions and extracurricular activities that aim to entertain, enrich and complete their training.
The fact of being a Google Reference Center has facilitated this change in operation. All students have their own email with domain @sanfer (Gmail), and with it they have access to all the Google tools created especially for the educational environment: Meet, Classroom, Blogs / Sites, Google Forms, etc.
The new way of working has been extended at all levels, each with its own characteristics. Thus, our Early Childhood children receive videos, stories, meets, emails from all their tutors, which allow them to continue having daily contact with each other for encouragement and encouragement. Every Monday, the 'little ones' receive a video from their teachers to tell them about the week's tasks and send them messages of encouragement. In addition, they have recorded shared stories on the website and propose activities that help children to better cope with this situation.
"As a teacher of Early Childhood Education, being a 'teacher' from a distance has been a challenge, especially having to face this new way of teaching and being able to carry it out in such a short time," explains Noelia Iglesias, tutor from a 5 year class. "Both my colleagues and I have had to learn to work with new technologies in record time." Among the positive things about this situation, Noelia highlights "learning to reorganize work methodologies, prioritize content, restructure materials, establish a greater bond with coworkers and develop greater collaboration and coordination between us to achieve our main objective , which is to help our 'little ones' by transmitting closeness and, above all, encouragement ”. Despite the great work they are doing, Noelia and her colleagues miss something that technology can never replace: “the children's hugs, kisses, hearing their day-to-day experiences count, growing up and learning by their side and sharing their laughter and their joy ”.
In the first levels of Primary Education, in addition to receiving videos from teachers and assignments through Classroom, children also conduct online sessions, both with their tutors and with other teachers, allowing them to continue to maintain contact and feel that both their teachers and their classmates are very close. In the upper levels, schedules have been adapted so that the tutors spend most of the day online with their students, being able to supervise the completion of the tasks, in addition to solving doubts. These schedules are totally flexible so that students can choose when they can connect.
The children did not take long to adapt to the current circumstances, which for them have even been motivating. This is explained by Juan Enrique Zapatero, 5th grade tutor. “Generally speaking, students have improved their online performance. A high percentage is motivated by being something different and they are seeing the amount of things that can be done and that favors certain learning for the future ”. Along the same lines, Alicia Seisdedos, 6th grade tutor, highlights that “the adaptability of our students, once again, surprises us. They have immediately made this way of working without question and always with enthusiasm and a smile ”. For her part, Patricia Cueto, 2nd grade tutor, emphasizes the role that families play. "Without being expected or planned, distance education has provided us with a closer relationship between family and school, with an implication that is necessary for children's learning at all times, but even more in the very special and atypical context that we find ourselves in" . It should be noted that the College is reaching the vast majority of Primary Education homes, and has provided equipment to those families that did not have them and have requested them. In this way, the percentage of students who follow classes and do homework is greater than 97%.
ESO and Bachillerato
In ESO and Bachillerato all students have their own Chromebook laptop, which facilitates communication and interaction between teacher-student. They continue learning synchronously by attending their classes through videoconferences at the usual time prior to the alarm state. “The tools, multiple and varied, allow us to design a very different learning from the traditional one, uniting the immense possibilities of the resources with the imagination of the teacher and the student. This way of working stimulates the inquiry process in all subjects, although it also involves content selection for choosing the most appropriate ones. It cannot replace the personal contact between the teacher and the student, but it allows the latter to feel accompanied throughout the learning process ”, explains Laureano Álvarez, one of the teachers at these levels.
“Although it is a bit complicated to reconcile family life and working remotely, it is very gratifying to get up in the morning, connect with your boys and work by videoconference with my blackboard as if you were at school, since it helps me to disconnect from this horrible situation in which we find ourselves ”, explains Eva Merideño. This situation is a challenge for many teachers, as highlighted by Carmen García. “Virtual contact with the student requires greater patience, empathy and understanding. But we must go ahead and adapt to the environment where we are also learning along with our students. ”
Department of Information Technology
All the work explained above would not have been possible without the role played by the College's Computer Department, available at all times to solve any problem that may occur and to answer questions both for students and families and for the teachers themselves. Our computer scientists have also made it possible to launch this course on our new digital platform, Oby, which is being a determining factor in maintaining this continuous contact with students and their families and, in this way, overcoming the complicated challenge educational raised by the coronavirus.
THE DATA (from the start of the alarm state)
- Active Chromebook: 632
- Classroom created: 380. The number of users has reached 1.496, which represents an increase of 35%.
- Teachers' publications: 9.268 (forms, documents, videos ...)
- Emails: more than 4.000. Their number has increased by 217%.
- Storage used: more than 19 Gb
- Meet Sessions: More than 4.000 (Full sessions of more than ten minutes; short student-teacher consultations are not included).
- Family challenges completed: 3
- Videos of teachers published on the Sanfer Channel: 9
- Equipment loan: 11.
- Calendar: its use has increased by 50%.
- Printers 3D: assigned for printing sanitary material.