Challenges of online learning mount as schools in many Thai provinces closed
The challenges of online learning persist in Thailand as schools in several provinces are ordered closed during the COVID-19 pandemic. The concerns are especially over kindergarten children, for whom online learning may not be suitable, as children of this age require physical development as well.
Not only do the teachers have to adapt their lessons, parents also have to help out. Some parents, however, still have to work during the pandemic. Therefore, their children are left with their grandparents or other relatives, who may not be especially tech-savvy, which makes it a lot harder for children to learn and develop other essential skills.
Some kindergarten teachers say that, when online teaching is the only choice, apart from learning to use new technology, with which some teachers are not familiar, investing in more equipment, such as a smartphone, computer or even a tripod to film their study materials, becomes a necessity.
Creating videos to grab their students’ attention is also another challenge for kindergarten teachers. As they explained to Thai PBS, some of their study materials include games, to increase interactive learning. Using other equipment, such as play dough and coloured pencils, are also provided to help with child development and creativity.
Parents will also have to come to school to collect students’ homework, along with other video clips, for their children to use at home.
Some of the teachers in Samut Sakhon province said that many of their students are infected with the virus and their schools have been converted into field hospitals. Therefore, teachers have less interaction with their students, which makes it harder to teach. Another challenge is that some families don’t have the equipment to access online learning.
There are also some teachers, and even parents, who are infected with COVID-19, so there is no one to teach the students. Therefore, their studies have to be put on hold.
They also expressed their concern that they will have to work a lot harder to ensure understanding among their students once school reopens, especially when students move up to a different year group when the new school year commences.