By Alicia Huang 12A
Since the coronavirus outbreak started, the whole world has been in anguish due to this unprecedented crisis. Shanghai was put under lockdown on January 17 because millions of people’s lives were at risk. Thus, to subside the risk of infection amongst crowds, online distance learning became the only solution for term 3.
Our online schedule was posted by Ms. Becky Block, our principal, as soon as we entered March, so BC courses could continue through screens. Not yet accustomed to the style of online learning, school administrators arranged accessible times to help and support students via Zoom. To alleviate our academic stress, Nanmo teachers seized the opportunity to ease the students’ burden by decreasing the weight of term 3, which we appreciated a lot and, indeed, reassured us. Communication between teachers and students turned out to be quite indispensable for online learning.
Although it was our first time to proceed with official online learning, we also kept in mind that our teachers may not be used to the online teaching mode either. Online learning was demanding for both teachers and students, especially when many teachers were putting themselves into our shoes and mitigating the possible consequences as much as they could. Students recognized how tricky it was for teachers to carry on teaching while alleviating our workload. Demonstrating empathy was very necessary under these special circumstances. In this sense, Nanmo administrators and teachers asked for feedback from students, which was essential in order to better understand what students were going through. It is Nanmo students’ responsibility to offer anything we can to assist our program under these harsh circumstances and ensure good communication.
This difficult period really contributed to nurturing students’ “Personal Awareness and Responsibility”, one of the core competencies of the BC Curriculum, as well as to fostering a sense of self-discipline. The “Personal Awareness and Responsibility” core competency aims to examine students’ understanding of the importance of social and emotional learning. It also guides students by reflecting on how we are progressing as learners. In this case, we were aware of the circumstances we were in and we also had to examine the strengths we have that could be applied to improve the situation, such as searching for strategies online, uplifting each other, staying as optimistic as we could, and giving feedback to stay accountable for the effectiveness of online learning. Student leaders in our school are always willing to interact with teachers on behalf of their classmates who feel exactly the same way, but who may be too shy to speak out.
This whole term of online learning was rather challenging. Both teachers and students tried their best to make the situation better, and we indeed made it happen because we all tried our best. We students were grateful for all the learning our teachers were able to continue with us in term 3. After all, although it was tough, online learning was a valuable chance for us to foster a sense of self-discipline and accountability. Not only did we gain a lot of knowledge, but we also developed as students and became better and stronger.