12 Apr Virtual Technology Week: Celebrations during the Online School Year
By Ms. Vina Marie D. Go, RPm
To say that there was a mismatch of reality and expectations this school year is an understatement.
We expected to see our classrooms, teachers and friends, or at the very least, hear the background noise of the excited female chatter in the school grounds. But the reality was, on the first day of school, we were greeted by the four walls of our bedroom, the bright screen of our computers or mobile devices, the hazy images of our teachers and friends, and the static-filled voices that accompanied the droll sound of the Zoom classes.
It was a year filled with adjustments and learning curves, and of forgoing events and experiences that cannot be translated into an online set-up.
Despite all of these working against us, God has granted us the venue to celebrate our talents and skills virtually. A year that started with struggles had birthed an event that went beyond anyone’s expectations.
The Virtual Technology Week 2021, with the theme “Thriving in a Digital World by Nurturing Creativity and Skills” was launched last February 15-19, 2021. The ICA high school body was showered with exciting activities that spanned all their subjects in Technology and Livelihood Education, Computer, and Robotics, as well as piqued the interest of the students in all grade levels.
Junior High School
The Junior High School students participated in the Hour of Code: Coral Reef Clean-Up Mission under the Computer and Robotics class The students created a code for the VR Ocean Cleaning Robot in an immersive underwater playground to collect and remove trash from the floor of the Mangrove Reef. Because of the technology, the students were able to see the amount of trash they were able to collect in real-time. To make it even more exciting, this was a contest among the students and the winners received a Certificate of Recognition for getting the highest accumulated kilograms of trash in the Coral Reef Playground.
The Grade 7 students had an activity called “Create a PSA: Share a Message of Change” where the students used the basics of coding in Python to create their own Public Service Announcement (PSA). Felicia Esther Boñales of 7-Harmony was given recognition for her work below:
In their TLE subject, Home Arts, the students took part in an online Macrame competition where they had to showcase their knotting skills in macrame. Out of all submissions, Sky Phoenix Chua of 7-Dignity achieved the title Macrame Artist for her work below.
And Nadia Penuliar of 7-Dignity achieved the title Macrame Artist of the Year for her work as seen below.
The Grade 8 students prepared for natural calamities through the game called “Stop Disasters!” and through this game, the students experienced the 5 natural environmental hazards (wildfires, earthquakes, floods, tsunamis, and hurricanes) through simulation. This game was created by the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR). The students learned the risks posed by natural hazards and found ways to manage their resources.
Their TLE subject, Culinary Arts II: Bread and Pastry Production had a live baking competition, titled: Cake Boss Diaries, where talented home bakers were challenged to decorate a cake in an hour with the theme “My hopes and dreams for 2021.”
Out of the 5 contestants, Brianna Go-Basquena of 8-Refinement bagged the ICAn Chef Bronze award with her Rainbow Dream Cake, Maria Teresa Reloza of 8-Respect bagged the ICAn Chef Silver award with her Drippings of Happiness Cake, and Christine Hu of 8-Commitment bagged the ICAn Chef Gold with her BaZuCa Cran Cake.
The pictures of their work are seen below respectively.
Together with this, the Grade 9 students participated in the Astro Pi’s challenge organized by European Schools Agency (ESA) in collaboration with the Raspberry Pi Foundation. The challenge offered an opportunity in conducting scientific investigations in space by writing computer programs that run on Raspberry Pi computers on board the International Space Station (ISS). The Astro Pi: Mission Zero gave the students a chance to have their codes run on the ISS. Using the Sense HAT Web Emulator software, students wrote a simple program to display a message and humidity reading on an Astro Pi computer, for the astronauts to see as they go about with their daily tasks on the ISS. The most creative program designed by Kaelyn Nightingale Tan of 9-Obedience is displayed below.
Their TLE subject, Contemporary Arts had a stop motion animation contest titled, A Message of HOPE.
Out of all submissions, the Animation Artist of the Year title was awarded to Aiyana Ilinca Teves of 9-Kindness. Her work featured a blooming sunflower to signify hope for the coming years. The stop motion animation is seen below.
Aside from the classroom’s activities, there were also virtual exhibits in both TLE and Computer and Robotics subject areas. The Student Digital Works Virtual Exhibit in Emaze showcased students’ best digital outputs in graphics, web and mobile app design, animation, Python program, Robotics and circuit design. A Virtual Tour of the National Museum of National Computing was also part of the Technology Week activity for Grade 7. TLE’S World of Wonderful Works using Google Sites showcased an exhibit of the students’ submissions and photo documentation of choice activities from this online school year.
Senior High School
The Senior High School students participated in the Chinese New Year: Festival of Lights Activity. This activity is inspired by the Chinese New Year or Spring Festival’s annual celebration where families get together to do activities such as eating, chatting, gift-giving, and lighting up fireworks and firecrackers, as its highlight. This year’s celebration was quite different compared to the traditional one because the Philippine Government restricts people to have gatherings and celebrations as prevention on the spread of the current pandemic.
In line with the continuous celebration of the Chinese New Year and being at one with the Chinese community, students were tasked to create a circuit or project that plays along with a specific song as a light display in lieu of firecrackers. The students created a 2 to 4-minute video that showcases the components, program, and final presentation of their project. The students were grouped with 4-5 members and they gradually worked on this project from January 25 to February 11, 2021, and they presented their output to the class and panel of judges last February 15-19, 2021. The group of Amanda Bernice Jao, Nicole Erlyn Lavadia, Caitlyn Sophie Lee, and S Jim Lee from 12 Charity was declared Champion. Their work is seen below.
And as a finale, a culminating event, Makeup Artistry Career Talk was conducted via MS Teams. The organizers of the event invited an ICAn alumni, Sylvina Lopez of Syntrix batch 2009, to speak about makeup artistry as a career and about freelancing in the art world in general. The talk was open to the high school body and to the whole ICA community. The students had a chance to listen to Slo’s experiences as she explored the world of art, makeup, and freelancing.
This was a year of unexpected events, but the unexpected sometimes surprises us with something better. These events would not have been possible without the support of the administration, the teachers who organized the event, and the ICAns, who tirelessly showcased their talents and skills in the activities and competitions during the weeklong celebration.
The weeklong celebration was not only about virtually showcasing the Technology and Livelihood Education, and Computer and Robotics subjects—it was also the precipice of student growth. The participants and the students alike had exemplified resiliency and creativity in adapting to a new learning environment. This event had been the sweetest culmination of the year, it was simply the icing on the cake.
We are proud of all of you, and we cannot wait to see you all in another virtual celebration of talents and skills next school year!