|Enhancing Teaching in the New Normal with OBS
|Christian Rey M. Obejas
| If there is one thing that the COVID-19 pandemic has undeniably altered, it is how we have lost the physical touch of a
teacher to a student – and how it was replaced with the “virtual touch” of distance learning.
In a report released by the United Nations, the COVID-19 pandemic has created the largest disruption of education systems
in history, affecting nearly 1.6 billion learners in more than 190 countries and all continents. Closures of schools and other
learning spaces have impacted 94 per cent of the world’s student population, up to 99 per cent in low and lower-middle income
countries, including the Philippines.
The education sector faces the most challenge of achieving normalcy in this trying time, yet education systems around the
world were swift to react and adapt. True to this, the Department of Education has implemented blended distance learning as its
major learning delivery modality (LDM) for the current school year which the pandemic hit in solidarity with the global call that
education must continue amid the pandemic. This LDM stimulated educators for innovation, exploring blended learning tools
which are contextually adaptive to the learners’ learning environment.
Upskilling Teachers’ Tools of Trade
The Schools Division Office of Ligao City immersed its teachers into using New Normal teaching tools and resources through
a series of training called Upskilling of Teachers on Online/Offline Distance Learning Modality conducted last July 3-17,2020.
With the hands-on sessions presented, teachers are given added tools of trade to make new normal teaching more efficient.
The most useful and practical educational tool presented was the use of Open Broadcaster Software (OBS).
From Game Stream to Education Stream
Open Broadcaster Software also referred to as OBS is a free open source software suite released in September 2012 that
is used for recording and live streaming. OBS is used to capture and record your screen while also capturing audio. Notably
popular with Twitch streamers, this software eliminates the need for an internal capture card that can be fairly expensive.
OBS was first widely used in the e-gaming industry by game streamers in their vlogs and commentaries of online games.
When the pandemic hit, the software gained more popularity when teachers started using it for their video lessons.
There are many reasons why OBS is widely preferred by educators. One is because of its adaptability to online conferencing
apps used in online classes such as Google Meet, Zoom, and Microsoft Teams. It is even compatible as an add-on feature to
Facebook Live which can be used during webinars and virtual meetings streamed via the application. Another is its feature to
be used in the asynchronous learning setup wherein teachers can effectively record themselves giving the instruction. OBS has
the ability to record videos while using applications found in the desktop without the use of internet connection.
Broadcasting SDO-Ligao to the Nation
The initiative of SDO Ligao through the Division ICT Office to introduce OBS as an efficient educational tool has been
recognized the DepEd Education Technology Unit (DepEd ETU). The partnership paved way to a national training where more
teachers can be educated about the use of OBS. The National Webinar Workshop on the Basics of Using Open Broadcasting
Software (OBS) Studio in Teaching and Learning was conducted last August 3-6, 2021. It was streamed via DepEd ETU’s
Facebook and Youtube page. It was also simultaneously broadcasted via DepEd Philippines’ Facebook page.
The webinar-workshop is the first nationally organized training spearheaded by DepEd SDO Ligao. Innovation such as these
manifests that education amid the pandemic is possible as long as creativity is put to work.
OBS Integration in the New Normal Education
We may not have prepared for COVID-19’s onslaught to humankind, but we can always prepare to adapt to the normality it
poses. This new way of learning can be an additional challenge to us this time, but no challenge is hard to face if we are driven
to continue providing quality education Para sa Bata, Para sa Bayan.