Remote education is all the rage and a necessity for Turkey struggling with the coronavirus outbreak. A lecturer in the northeastern province of Artvin is determined to continue providing skiing lessons through an unorthodox approach, despite the challenges.
Fikri Özkan, who works at a physical education college belonging to Artvin Çoruh University, boasts that the university is one of the few higher education institutions teaching skiing. Not wanting to delay teaching his students, Özkan enlisted the help of his wife, armed with a video camera, to teach whatever he can online and in nature's classroom. Donning his ski suit, he goes to Atabarı, a ski resort in the province, every week. “I am trying to teach as best as I can. I want the online classes feel more realistic. Students can learn better if you demonstrate them, rather than explaining,” he told Anadolu Agency (AA) on Monday as he fitted his skis for the next class.
Though grade schools mostly returned to in-person education, universities are slower to resume lessons, especially for vocational training involving practical classes.
Özkan says skiing and canoeing, two elective courses at the university, were popular among students who had the opportunity to learn them first-hand due to Artvin’s ski resorts and lakes. But he added that the courses naturally depended on practice, something the students were deprived of, in online education. “I tried to curb that feeling of being distant. Eventually, more students started showing up online for the classes,” he said. He added that he was grateful to his wife for helping him. “I can’t lecture while shooting at the same time. She braves cold and snowfall just to help me,” he said.
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