As schools remain shut down in Iran due to the outbreak of COVID-19 disease, teachers began using social media and various other methods to keep students involved with learning and to compensate for the shortage of teaching hours.
In the past few weeks, several videos of teachers went viral while they were teaching their students from home by recording videos.
According to Fars News Agency, teachers share the videos on the internet and the school channel on social networks in order to prevent any disruption in the education process. Alongside these measures, students are also assigned and tracked by teachers.
Students with special needs are an exception, because just learning from television or social media is not enough for them. Therefore, some teachers go to the students’ homes.
Seyyed Javad Hosseini, Deputy Education Minister and Head of Iran’s Special Education Organisation says 164,384 hours of educational courses, counseling services for seven groups of students with special needs are accessible through cyberspace, home-based education and tutoring during school holidays.
“Students with autism, emotional-behavioural disorders, visual impairments, hearing problems, physical disabilities, mental retardation and multi-disability can use these materials in 2034 schools,” continued Hosseini.
He went on to say that more than 22,500 staff, administrators, advisors and teachers are providing such students with education when schools are shut down.
“Teachers have run 9,930 online classrooms and students are given virtual training through these channels.”
Maryam Sadeghzadeh Tabatabai, a third grade teacher in Ahwaz, says “To produce visual content, my daughter records a video of my teaching on a white paper at home, and I send it to my students on social media.
“My students also have a great deal of creativity in cyberspace. For example, one of the students makes songs for the textbook poems, and after playing those songs with a guitar, she sends them to the virtual classroom.”
Iran’s Minister of Education, Mohsen Haji-Mirzaee also wrote on his twitter page recently that “My colleagues across the country have been able to creatively continue the teaching process while the schools are closed. I thank all my good colleagues, especially the teacher who used her own home stuff to educate her students in Hamidiyeh.”
The death toll from the new coronavirus outbreak in the Islamic republic is on the rise. Hundreds of people have lost their lives, while thousands are confirmed infected with the virus. Besides China, Italy and South Korea, Iran is among the worst-affected countries since the outbreak of the disease last December. US cruel sanctions also add insult to the injury.
As part of its efforts to contain the virus, Tehran has taken several measures including the closure of all schools and higher learning institutions, calling off sports events and restricting travel.
The deadly coronavirus, known as COVID-19, has spread to over 130 countries so far. The World Health Organisation has declared the outbreak a “pandemic”.