In celebration of National Teachers’ Month and World Teachers’ Day, Globe held its second year of “Forefront: The National Conference on Digital Learning” last Oct. 1 via livestream on Globe Business’ and the Department of Education’s official Facebook pages. Forefront paved the way for educators and academic institutions from all over the country to come together and share their insights about new online learning modalities.

“This is a very important initiative to strengthen partnership between Globe and educational institutions as allies in technology integration and learning innovation,” said Maridol Ylanan, Head of Strategy and Marketing, Globe Business-MSME Group.

In partnership with the National Teachers’ Month Coordinating Council (NTMCC), the Department of Education (DepEd), and the Commission on Higher Education (CHED), Globe provided a platform in the form of a National Conference on Digital Learning called Forefront to allow delegates from the academe and the industry to share ideas on how to improve online learning and pedagogies.

“It recognizes our educators for their determination and hard work, and provides the ideal venue for interactions to establish productive engagements. It’s also a venue for them to present studies on online learning and pedagogies,” explained CHED executive director, Atty. Cinderella Filipinas Benitez-Jaro.

Among the delegates, 18 were chosen to present their shortlisted papers following the theme, “Transformative Online Pedagogies: Reimagining Education for a Better Tomorrow”. The topics they discussed provided insights about technology integration across the curriculum, best practices in remote learning and teaching, emerging technologies in education, e-learning initiatives, adaptation to new technologies, blended learning, online assessment, e-tutoring, and plagiarism technologies.

Globe has also partnered with different learning technologies companies like D2L Brightspace, Microsoft, Google for Education, and ClassIn. Technology leaders from these providers imparted knowledge about their platforms, offering more accessibility, safer learning environments, and interactive platforms for students, teachers, and educational institutions.

DepEd Undersecretary Tonisito M. C. Umali addressed the risks learners and educators go through, such as the safety and reliability of information students receive, and how teachers maximize the learning management system. Umali also added that the number of enrollees from both public and private in basic education has reached 26.3 up to 27 million, higher compared to last year.

For the plenary session, international guest speaker Dr. Edwige Simon provided the attendees insights about the significance of technology in pedagogy. Dr. Simon holds a PhD from the University of Colorado Boulder. She currently the Online Learning and Instructional Technology director of International Center for Language Studies located in Washington, D.C. “Teaching takes two things: it takes skills, and it takes imagination,” said Dr. Simon.

She also discussed how online learning was no longer an innovation, as several countries have already embraced it even before the pandemic. However, most of these online courses targeted adult learners since the majority of society believes schools are still the best place for children to learn. She explained this with an example of a framework seen in her presentation.

“We need new online pedagogies to meet the needs of young learners,” Dr. Simon said. “Online learning is not a silver bullet. And it’s certainly not a silver bullet for our younger learners. For online learning to be deployed effectively, it requires proper training, it requires knowing the pedagogical frameworks, and it also requires access to the right technology.”

She also discussed adept solutions to meet the need of learners and provide high quality education programs. “As always, when we’re looking at educational initiatives and programs, the priority should always be the learners,” Simon suggested.

Dr. Simon concluded her discussion with a comment on the connection between technology and pedagogy: “We need educational technology companies to collaborate closely with teachers, with educators to develop products that will meet their needs and the needs of their students. We also need new pedagogies and tools for synchronous online learning.”

The conference concluded by announcing the awardees of Globe’s Forefront Best Research Presentation. Mark Arthur Payumo Abalos, Segment Head for Education, mentioned that “Globe recognizes selected studies that aim to contribute to a body of knowledge on digital learning. The award is a form of recognition to individuals who have used their advanced knowledge and expertise in digital learning and educational technology in helping students, fellow teachers, and their institutions.” The presentations that stood out in the conference are the following:

● Achieving Best Learning Moments Through Virtual Fieldtrips by Mr. Kaybee F. De Ocampo

● Developing teachers’ Growth Mindset: The secret to student achievement? by Ms. Joanne T. Sison

● (Re)Thinking Course Content Design and Development in the Next Normal by Dr. Louie B. Dasas

● Exploring Digital Intelligence Among Generation Z Learners: Basis for a Faculty Development Program by Dr. Jayson Bergania

Globe Business-MSME Group head KD Dizon highlighted the dedication of teachers in the continuance of learning for every student despite the pandemic crisis in her message.

“In the end, we all want to see a Philippines were families’ dreams come true, businesses flourish, and the nation is admired,” Dizon said.

With joined hands, Globe continuously extends support in providing solutions that schools can easily adapt. Enhancing digital pedagogy is enhancing the quality of online education.

To access the livestream, please visit: http://www.globe.com.ph/forefront.

 


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