Teacher of the year: Riefqah Sasman takes class online, teaches at night using free data

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Riefqah Sasman, a teacher at Heideveld High School, Cape Town, created a website for the second term of the school year and engaged with learners on Google classroom. (Supplied)
Riefqah Sasman, a teacher at Heideveld High School, Cape Town, created a website for the second term of the school year and engaged with learners on Google classroom. (Supplied)

Riefqah Sasman, a teacher at Heideveld High School, Cape Town, created a website for the second term of the school year and engaged with learners on Google classroom.

The English First Additional Language teacher also made provision for learners without internet connectivity and shared all content and interactive resources with them on WhatsApp.

READ | You might want to look at these local online schools this year

"Learners were able to contact me and access my worksheets and tutorial videos via WhatsApp in the middle of the night when using the night time free data. Sometimes I would have learners contact me at 1am! But I allowed this because I understood their circumstances. There was no other way," she says.

As her website was shared amongst colleagues across the Western Cape, different teachers (whom she had never met) reached out to and asked permission to use it for their pupils.

"This was the very thing I wanted to achieve! So imagine my delight. Collaboration and sharing of knowledge and resources are two of the skills needed to prepare for the Fourth Industrial Revolution and this is the type of culture we would want teachers to adopt. Ubiquitous learning is also something I push with my learners with game-based, project-based, research-based, coding and creativity-based activities."

Sasman has been teaching for 13 years and said she fell in love with technology in the classroom to the extent that she is pursuing her B.Ed Honours in Computer-Integrated Education.

"Remote learning, digital learning and learner centered pedagogy are key elements that drive my passion for e-learning and the positive of this lockdown was when I could explore and discover new ways of engaging my learners in the way they want to learn (with technology). I was definitely in my element here and took full advantage of it!"

Visit Ms Sasman’s online classroom here.

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