Embracing the new norms forced upon educators

Covid-19 has been with us for nearly two years, and I have come to terms with that. I have embraced the new norms in order to do what is best for my students and school.

I no longer see the pandemic as purely doom and gloom. I focus on the positives of online learning and the wonders of technology that has brought my school closer to our students and their parents.

Of course, there are many downsides. But there have also been areas where we have grown, and thrived, despite the pandemic.

Things that we once took for granted, now seem precious, and fills us with a sense of longing.

At our school, the children have a culture of hugging the teachers and being expressive. We pride ourselves on that family atmosphere.

But due to Covid-19, we cannot do that anymore. Hence, one of our biggest fears, was losing touch with our students.

But amazingly, that did not happen because we found other ways of communicating and bonding – not only with our students, but also with their parents.

Technology is a gift. Schools can conduct online classes. That was something we probably never thought we would enjoy.

Of course, nothing beats a physical classroom interaction where you are face-to-face with your students. But online learning means, as educators, we are still there for our students.

With instant messaging services, teachers stay in constant touch with the students, and sometimes, their parents. That is especially important for those sitting for major examinations.

Opening the channels of communication makes it easier for students who are stuck at home, but have questions about their schoolwork or assignments.

Of course, that does not mean that teachers are on call round the clock. Everyone’s time needs to be respected.

Earlier, I mentioned that we have bonded even more with the students and parents. That was a direct result of the pandemic.

Global Oak Tree Scholars (GOTS) International School had its month-long mid-term break in June.

We knew that most parents would be working from home. They had to handle being there for one whole month with nowhere to go and nothing to do.

As such, we organised several contests and workshops for the students and parents for the entire month.

We had previously done so on a smaller scale, but due to Covid-19, we knew we had to do something different this year.

I am proud to say that it was a huge success. Not only did we keep the children busy, but we also had the parents involved in recording them and joining in the fun.

As the winners were based on public voting, other family members and their friends got involved, too.

So, even though the students were on holiday, we still had plenty of interaction.

To my fellow educators, hang in there. We can still make a difference in children’s lives.

We may not like what Covid-19 has done, but we can overcome anything by being positive.

This is the personal opinion of the writer and does not necessarily represent the views of Twentytwo13.

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