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Pandemic crisis generating opportunity: A source of inspiration for pedagogy

“Every adversity contains, at the same time, a seed of equivalent opportunity!” – Napoleon Hill

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       COVID 19 has had a detrimental impact on humanity. At a local level, our country also witnessed the menace of the spread of Covid-19 resulting in a nationwide lockdown on 24 March 2020. The mission of educators to students has been the ensurance of uninterrupted learning. The vast majority of educators were expected to upskill and reskill via online classes, national or international webinars, and conferences.

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This crisis has indeed made students techno-savvy as they familiarize themselves with the synchronous and asynchronous modes of teaching. This is best illustrated by reflecting on the jitsi, big blue button, zoom, Google meet, Google classroom which is the new normal in the education field. Here, my personal experiences are considered on how I generated opportunity during this pandemic situation within Nepal and other foreign countries.

    In retrospect, when the whole world, including Nepal, was affected by Nepal English Language Teachers Association Banke launched a twenty- five-day online teacher training for all interested teachers.  I also had the opportunity to get acquainted with the Learning management system, Schoology, and various web tools and presented a session on Google classroom. More than two hundred teachers directly benefited. The webinar focused practically on professional development on using technology in English language classroom and made me familiar with presentation skill .similarly, I attended the TESOL International Virtual Online Convention and the English Language Expo 2020 for the first time and got a chance to know more resources such as tube quizard and various credible websites to test plagiarism, teach grammar and language skills. In addition to this, I started learning management systems such as Schoology, easy class, and the most powerful one Ubiquitous based learning and hundreds of multimedia platforms such as flip grid, Ed Puzzle, seesaw, and several others. Becoming the ambassador of this initiative was my goal which I began sharing.

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    With time I indulged incessantly on a plethora of information communication technology and later on with coordination with Nepal English Language Teachers Association branches, Society of Technology Friendly Teachers, and the Education Training Centre, I shared more than twenty sessions on the integration of information communication and technology into the English Language Classroom within a nation. As a result, gaining such knowledge paved the way to inspiring a technologically – oriented pedagogical attitude.

   Although I have been engaging in the international webinar since 2014, during this pandemic situation, I got more opportunities to learn and share web tools with pedagogy in the position of the keynote speaker in more new countries. To specify, the first was an international virtual seminar coordinated by the continuing proficiency development institute, Thailand on semantics and pragmatics in translation study based on translation strategies undertaken explicitly from semantics, pragmatics, and relevance theory. Interestingly enough, for the second time with the same country educator, I presented a session on the uses of  Near pod, organized by the International Society of Teachers, Administrators, and Researchers, and as an award got an Honorary Member of the organization.

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     After facilitating in different international webinars I was awarded Microsoft Innovative Educator Trainer and ambassador of 21st Digital skills. I joined the first-ever cohort of Ambassadors across the globe which opened the door of building rapport relation and more opportunity of exploring the use of technology with the global educator. My role dictates active involvement with global Ambassador and promote the movement of impacting lives by developing 21st-century skills, assist with training, webinars, to promote the set objectives of the initiative. I have presented in more than thirty countries and still, my journey of learning and sharing is continuing, this crisis makes me familiarizing myself with the role of the global educator contributed to nurturing the great minds for the actualization of the United Nations 2030 agenda. In other words, promote a sustainable development goal for quality education. In conclusion, all educators are currently getting ample incentive to understand and practice innovative ideas. Thus Pandemic situations enhance our status in world ways by focusing on the resources available based on students’ interests and needs.

        Mr. Bibas Thapa is an Ass. English Language lecturer , AE- E teacher. He is associated with NELTA as a life member. He is Microsoft innovative educator, expert and trainer. Including 150 hours online TESO L from Arizona State University, he has done dozens if Moocs courses. He has presented papers in National and international conferences regarding uses of web tools in ESL Classroom. His main interest is on Using ICT in English Education and teacher training.

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