PATH OUTSIDE THE FOUR WALLS
What’s happening while TLRC’s hibernating?
The TLRC commenced the plans made at the start of September 2019 with the help of the University of the Philippines Alumni Cebu Chapter and TLRC “graduates”.
- TLRC completed the revision of forms.
- TLRC’s current staff, Rowena Rafaelis, was asked to help the SPMO since the TLRC’s base services are not yet in place.
- Still, both the Alumni ID and the Alumni Tracer processes were on hold.
- New VLE course sites were added as requested by several teachers from the Master of education.
- There will be an elementary robotics programing workshop spearheaded by the UPHS Computer Course Instructor, Mr. Fernand Bernardez on January 2020.
- TLRC investigates ICT use in Educational Technology Courses in the Master of Education Program.
- Still, pending or in wait for the commitment of teachers invited in creating short course modules.
- The Robotics Training on December 27-28, 2019 was successfully delivered.
“teach the next generation of students by teaching their teachers”
Going back and creating a path outside the four walls of UP Cebu
When TLRC’s renovation started in September 2019, few of the TLRC previous tutors and assistants visited. One of these patrons is Cleo Credo. She was once TLRC’s student assistants before graduating from the Department of Computer Science in 2015. Cleo Credo once offered the center to have a specialized learning site, but the establishment of the UP Cebu VLE to house the General Education Modules put her directives into other priorities. Cleo consulted TLRC about ways to expand the offices extension program last November 2019. During that time, the Master of Education Program Biology Majors were fresh from a service-learning activity which involves training elementary teachers methods action research that makes use of the Research Basics Module developed by the TLRC. She then proceeded in asking what TLRC offered previously. TLRC trained some students to do basic Robotics.
Cleo, with her computer science background, proceeded to ask if the TLRC coordinator can train her to teach robotics and help her organize an extension program geared towards helping elementary teachers in the province. The planning commenced afterwards.
On the morning of December 26, 2019. The TLRC Coordinator along with two student assistants and Cleo, arranged and inspected the school in preparation for the training. The beneficiary school was Bulalacao Elementary School in Alcoy. This was the same school that the UPAA Cebu promised to support for the rest of 2019.
The robots being used for elementary robotics programming is the mBOT developed by the Makeblock Company. Mblock is the type of Scratch based program used to program the elementary level robots. The same robot also makes use of Arduino as the software platform for coding. Because Cleo was fascinated with Internet of Things (IOT) and tinkering, Arduino is an enjoyable Integrated Development Environment (IDE) to use in teaching.
The training formally opened on the 27th of December. Cleo spearheaded the lecture while Mx. Gumalal, TLRC’s current coordinator, facilitated the group of teachers and supervising their programming. They were taught basic Scratch using sprites, sensors and actuators, and eventually programming the robot to do several tasks integrated into a routine.
The teachers were very curious, and it made the training smooth sailing. All the teachers were very focused on the task at hand.
At the end of the day, all the participants, including the training team, felt very accomplished. Cleo was very hands on with the training and was very patient and informative. The training closed with everyone satisfied about their work.
What’s next to this? Cleo wishes to do more trainings with TLRC and would like to provide women an avenue to associate and encourage themselves to try jobs that are not stereotypically geared towards them. She hopes that more women would go to engineering fields and computer science. She has been an advocate of Women in Tech and Girls can Code. Being a senior software engineer at the age of 25, Cleo is a very good example to follow for those women who felt that jobs in computer and data science aren’t for them. Cleo believes that all job fields must have equal opportunity for both men and women. She hopes to channel this idea to the next generation by teaching their teachers.
Before leaving Bulalacao Elementary School, Cleo donated one mBot for the school to use. Cleo will soon be doing volunteer trainings at the TLRC on 2020.
TLRC created and provided the training modules for the extension program. Cleo was trained and guided before the workshop. TLRC was the one who coordinated. All other expenses were paid in kind (transportation, lodging, and food) by sponsors who insisted not to be named. The snacks were provided by the UPAA Cebu Chapter through Atty. Ria Lidia Espina. TLRC Representatives did not use the office’s internal funds, rather, the creation of the modules and the facilitation was done as an extension or volunteerism.
Cleo Credo paid for and acquired the robots personally. And for that, we thank her very much.