Developing digital skills to support Play Work | Adult Learning Wales

Developing digital skills to support Play Work


Our tutor Matthew Jenkins who delivers Play Work and autism awareness courses in community settings, shares how lockdown has presented its challenges, but how he is soon looking forward to returning to face-to-face learning.

Matthew says, “Like a lot of industries, work got cancelled or postponed because of the pandemic. When we were able to teach, I had to adjust to using online group calls to deliver lectures. Many of the methods were the same as in class, just with a lot more cats popping into view!

“I had to work out some new techniques and get a lot more familiar with computers and online tools – and deal with the panic whenever my laptop crashed or had technical issues! To combat this, and to work smarter, I pre-recorded some lectures, which meant I had to learn new filming techniques. I spent a lot of time learning to edit video clips, including adding music and messages - which I enjoyed.

“People can start adult learning in their own time - sometimes this is when their employer requires it. This means that busy lives get in the way and it can be a challenge to keep everyone engaged. Fortunately, Play Work attracts people who are enthusiastic and fun, this helps to keep courses engaging while I am able to try new and exciting ways to deliver the qualifications.”

Matthew has used his years of experience and the new skills he has learned to adapt to online delivery, but shares with us that the best parts about his job are the same whether it’s online or in person.

Matthew continues, “You never know how a group will respond to a topic and I like to draw on experiences and stories that make the topic fit right for the group. By including my learners real-life experiences, I am able to make the lessons more tailored which is extremely rewarding for me. Despite having a positive experience of online delivery, I am looking forward to seeing people face-to-face and visiting our community settings again soon.”

Matthew has worked hard to support his learners and is looking forward to interacting in person again.
“Learners have fed back that they’ve found online learning beneficial as they can find the time to join in with less travelling and childcare to organise. Lots of my learners have liked having the group to meet and connect with regularly, even after the lockdowns had finished. There are other benefits to face-to-face classes though like visiting new communities and having more interactive learning, so hopefully I’ll get to do some soon.”

We would like to congratulate Matthew on his continued hard work and wish him well for the return of face-to-face learning.

To find out more about Play Work courses, click here.

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