A teacher faces new challenges | #speakup barometer | Colombia | DW | 20.02.2019
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#speakup barometer | Colombia

A teacher faces new challenges

“My students are distracted.” Even high-school students in Colombia have a smartphone nowadays. For the teachers, it comes as a new challenge.

Adriana Zulaga, a 56-year-old high school teacher in Medellín, can't imagine life without the Internet. Nevertheless, she sometimes struggles with new technology and must find ways to deal with smartphone use in class.

"We use the Internet all day, from the moment we get up in the morning until we go to bed at night. In that sense, our lives have changed a lot in recent years. Many people now have an Internet connection at home. I always pay a lot, 180,000 pesos a month (about $55 or €51), but that package also includes television. My mobile contract, including data and phone calls, is another 85,000 pesos a month. But it's worth it, it's very practical to use the Internet for communicating with colleagues. Sometimes, I also find it somewhat complicated. The students at my school come from poorer neighborhoods: Not all of them have regular access to the Internet, but many of them have smartphones. Because the students are distracted by their phones, we don't permit to use them in class. The kids hang around in the parks after school, where there are often free Wi-Fi zones."


The #speakup barometer is a DW Akademie project that examines the connection between digital participation, freedom of expression and access to information. Learn more at www.dw.com/barometer