Frustrations in AI implementation at school

HCMC has been piloting AI at high schools for 2 years to increase training quality. Yet a lack of necessary resources makes it impossible to widely apply it to all educational institutes sited in the city.

Students in Cach Mang Thang Tam Junior High School (District 10) are taking part in the STEM Festival 2023-2024 (Photo: SGGP)

In a History-Geography lesson of Class 6A14 (Tan Binh Junior High School in Tan Binh District), students gained a wonderful experience of implementing advanced technology without using a smartphone.

Instead of scanning a QR code via a personal mobile phone to answer questions of their teacher, these students receive a piece of A4 paper with their own QR code for the student order in the class list and symbols for four options at four corners. They will raise their selection high for the teacher to scan each answer, which will then be summarized and sent to their teacher’s laptop. This method saves paper as the pack can be reused multiple times in different classes.

In another Civic Education lesson of Class 9A1 (Phan Sao Nam Junior High School in District 3), the teacher instructed students to design a postcard to express their appreciation to their parents via an AI platform. This not only offers a valuable experience of implementing IT in learning but also helps the lessons become more interesting.

Many teachers in HCMC commented that several educational applications use AI to aid the teaching process like the steps of lesson preparation, question bank development, educational game design, video clip or drawing creation.

Students are participating in the STEM Festival 2023-2024, held by the Education and Training Division of Thu Duc City (Photo: SGGP)

However, one reason that leads to reluctance among teachers when applying technologies is software expenses. It is suggested that trainers can take advantage of free apps such as Quizizz, ClassDojo, Padlet or share an account to save cost.

Another issue that prevents teachers from applying AI in their teaching process is a lack of necessary software manuals or proper training on AI. Head of the Education and Training Division of Thu Duc City Nguyen Thai Vinh Nguyen commented that teachers themselves need to actively obtain more knowledge in this field from possible resources.

Dr. Ngo Quoc Hung, Director of Cotai Talent Training Center – the partner of Le Hong Phong High School for the Gifted in AI piloting, shared that students now are very quick in updating technological skills while a large number of teachers are more reluctant, and thus cannot keep up with their learners. Waiting for the introduction of suitable mechanisms or policies before implementing AI in teaching makes many trainers outdated in the eye of their students. These teachers should boldly experience new advanced tools and learn from their mistakes.

Agreeing with that, Head of the Education and Training Division of District 3 Pham Dang Khoa stressed the inevitable upgrade of teaching methods to implement more technologies in order to increase interactions between teachers and students and personalize the learning process.

“AI is merely a support tool and cannot replace the role of a teacher in a class. Mastering this useful technology makes teachers more confident in their job learners more active in their studying”, said Mr. Khoa.

Deputy Director of the HCMC Education and Training Department Nguyen Bao Quoc proposed that depending on real conditions, each school can apply AI in the teaching process or extra-curriculum activities, academic playgrounds. His department has already made an order to Saigon University for a program to teach AI to students at school. This is an essential foundation for the introduction of AI learning-teaching in all schools citywide.

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