I never thought I’d be writing a blog post with this title, but here we are. (I apologize in advance if this is rambly and overdramatic. But these are my thoughts.)
Yesterday my school announced that we would be closing for at least the next week due to the spread of the Coronavirus. I am fortunate enough to attend a school that has the resources and opportunities to conduct class online, so that’s what I’ll be doing for the next week(s) or month(s). Since I’ll have much more free time than I’d prefer, I figured I may as well write about it. After all, living during a pandemic is sort of a once-in-a-lifetime kind of thing.
Having to attend high school from home is a really hard thing for me to digest, and I’ve found myself in tears a lot over the past 24 hours. I know that’s an overreaction for some, but I love school, and I love physically being at school. I love my teachers, I love my classmates, and I love to learn. So it’s really hard to give that all up so suddenly.
On one hand, I feel so lucky that I’m able to learn and see my teachers from home; I know that there are hundreds of schools around the world that don’t have these resources. But on the other hand, I’m devastated that I’m not physically able to attend school during my senior year (of all years!). It’s only been one day and I already feel claustrophobic. I know this is all for the best, and I know everyone’s just trying to stay healthy, but I can’t lie and say that it isn’t a challenge.
My classes are all skill-based this semester: Italian, Ceramics, and Piano. It’s kind of hard to go to ceramics without touching clay, and it’s hard to learn about major and minor chords without a live demonstration (at least for me). It’s just frustrating because I love all of my classes this semester so much. It’s my last semester of high school, so I’d like to actually be at school and be able to practice my skills in these subjects. I know that closing the school is all for the best and all for good reasons, but it just feels like a waste of time that could be spent actually in school.
I also want to say that all of my teachers have been unbelievably positive about all of this, and they’re all doing the best that they can to make sure we learn as much as possible. I love my teachers and am so grateful to have such amazing ones, but all I want is to be back in the classroom with them.
Anyway, in case you’re curious, here’s what the first day of distance learning looked like for me…
I woke up and got out of bed at 8:45 a.m. I took a shower, made an iced coffee, and cleaned my desk before my first lesson, which was Italian, started at 10:00 a.m. Today was technically just the “test day,” so it only lasted about a half-hour. We used Microsoft Teams so I could see my teacher, but all of my classmates kept their cameras and mics turned off unless we had a question.
Halfway through the mini-lesson, I got really really sad listening to my teacher go over our work. I could barely focus because I thought about how much I hate that all of this is necessary. Just yesterday I was in class with my teacher, physically talking to her and all of my friends. It’s just so weird. I know I’ll get used to it, but for now, it’s really hard.
After Italian, I have Ceramics. My teacher is out of town this weekend, so we weren’t able to do a video chat with him. He posted an assignment for us to turn in which was to design and sketch a sculpture inspired by an artist.
The next block was “lunch.” I finished my sculpture (which was Keith Haring-inspired) because I wasn’t very hungry. Then, I had senior privileges which is when I typically go home for lunch. Since I was at home anyway, I began to write this blog post. And then I had piano, my favorite class this semester.
I totally lost it during piano. I couldn’t even laugh at the jokes my teacher made because I just wanted to be together with my class. It was so hard to focus, too. Yesterday he gave an awesome lesson on how to make a major chord, and today he taught us how to make a minor chord through a Youtube video since he didn’t have a physical piano to show us. I didn’t get anything from today’s lesson which really really sucks. I hope it gets easier.
Also, we found out over the group chat that three of my classmates who are boarding students are going home this weekend and won’t be returning for the rest of the semester, even if we go back to school. Yesterday was the last day I’ll see them, and I didn’t even know it.
It all just feels like a bad dream. I’d like to go to sleep and be woken up when this is all over when everyone is healthy and life is back to normal and no time ever passed.
I’m trying to be optimistic, but it’s not easy. All I want for my birthday this year is to be back at school.