Rema | Teacher & KG1/KG2 Supervisor | Amman, Jordan
How has COVID-19 changed your professional life?
R: COVID-19 has changed my professional life by making me use new methods of teaching. I joined an online course about distance learning technology and received a certificate in order to use these tools to teach my students. Without it, I can do nothing to help my students at this time.
How has distance learning impacted your students?
R: In my opinion, distance learning has affected most of my students very negatively, mainly because they are receiving information from so many different platforms - the Ministry of Education platform, Facebook posts, YouTube videos, and schoolteachers themselves. This can cause a lot of confusion for the students and it’s difficult for them to follow all of these sources of information at the same time, particularly at such a young age. Also, there are many parents who don’t have the resources to follow all of these platforms for educating their kids - many don’t have access to the technology needed, such as phones and computers. Even parents with access to the correct technology struggle to use it with their children because they do not have proper training.
How do you think COVID-19 will affect Jordanian schools in the long term?
R: There have been many discussions in the last year about replacing Tawjihi (the General Secondary Education Certificate Examination in Jordan completed in a student’s final year of schooling before university) and COVID-19 will expedite that discussion. It is likely that Tawjihi will become an online examination, which will save a lot of money for the educational system in Jordan.
Do you have any suggestions for the government or the Ministry of Education on future policies surrounding education in Jordan?
R: From my point of view as a teacher, we have to gradually move to this kind of distance learning education. I also don’t think that all stages should use distance learning, particularly kindergarten and primary stages. It is very difficult for the parents and students, based on my observations as a supervisor in a kindergarten and the complaints I’ve received during lockdown from both parents and teachers. Moreover, I think that teachers and even students, particularly older students, need more training in order to use distance learning programs.
What have the past few weeks taught you while you’ve been at home?
R: The past few weeks have taught me a lot, really. The most important one is how to protect my family and my country by respecting laws and staying home. In addition, I have to keep going by learning new technology and encouraging my students to follow their lessons and achieve their goals, especially because they work so hard all year and I know they have a lot of stress because of this situation. Any person can do a lot of things, what is most important is that you love your home, love your friends, your family, your community, and your country. Through this you can do really great things.