If you were to ask any student how they are finding online learning, the majority would probably answer with something like this: “I hate it.”
8o’clock until 4o’clock we sit in front our screens taking notes for exams that are unlikely to go ahead. The monotony is utterly draining. We are expected to fit in revision after lessons, resulting in further screen time, somehow pushing through with little to no motivation, only wanting to climb back into bed the moment the Team call ends.
We are tired and bored of the same routine everyday and teachers still want to remind us: “Make sure to get outside for some fresh air”, they say. “Get in your daily exercise! Keep going! Have a rest,” contrast with, “here are two more essays due in for tomorrow… and a quiz on Wednesday!” Aren’t they tired too? The contradictory, juxtaposing things they say only confuse us further: they want us to have a break from screens though continue to set more and more work. When will it end?
It is as though the Government and our teachers have left us to our own devices. I do not think teachers truly appreciate the stress and anxiety we are currently enduring, especially Years 11 and 13. Being in the last year of sixth form myself, the thing that worries me the most is lack of uncertainty and structure from the government as well as the teaching staff. I completely understand that the teachers too are struggling to comprehend what the government are saying (Bojo’s team also being very contradictory), however, they don’t help themselves!
We want clarity – everyone wants clarity – and whether we will get it or not from exam boards or teachers is 50/50 at this point. My school have set ‘mock exams’ for March which could well be our last ever exams, saying that they’re ‘not important’ and ‘probably won’t count towards anything’ – why add unnecessary pressure to us? Perhaps they think we are loving working from home, in the comfort of our PJs, with endless cups of tea, coffee and biscuits, but that’s just the tip of the ice berg. Sure, it’s great having those luxuries, but the repetitiveness and hardships of the school day and endless assignments is getting to be too much.
I only wish that teachers took a moment to see this situation through our eyes. Our parents even understand us! Why can’t teachers see how much we are suffering? The government have also neglected us – students from secondary, higher and even further education (university). We have all been swept under the rug and they’d rather conjure up a plan to get the pubs back up and running and airlines flying than focus on us, yet we’re the ones who will be paying back this epic economic debt in the future when we graduate.
Do not get me wrong: none of this is black and white. There are so many sides to this infinite sided coin, but here is the point of view from a struggling seventeen year old in the middle of a catastrophic, major, historical world event. It’s crazy to think that we are living through something that will be on the syllabus for teenagers in a good few decades time!
On a much more positive note, if you are in the same position as me right now, all I can say is we will get through this – whenever that is – we will make it to the other side. All we can really do is keep pushing on, keep breathing, keep our eyes on the goal: the summer. Don’t be so hard on yourself and remember that we are all in the same boat.
Here’s an aesthetic picture of what my mornings are beginning to look like before I delve into the icy waters of online school!