We are living in unprecedented times.
You hear it over and over again, and it’s absolutely true. So what does that mean for the school students of today?
Might it mean that there’s a gap in their education; that they’ll always be behind the 8 ball, struggling to keep up? Or might the time away from the classroom make them more appreciative of their classes, their learning, their teachers? Might it in fact give them some grit, an inner drive, forcing them to never take school for granted ever again?
Could it make them lose their momentum, the break from face-to-face daily practice affecting their reading fluency, their handwriting, their number skills? Or could online learning perhaps strengthen their ability to read texts of a different type like websites and etstudios, to type and publish their words more efficiently, and to master the use of apps that do their calculations for them?
Will forced lockdowns and cancelled sports mean a decrease in their social skills, creating a disconnect and forcing them to withdraw? Or will ingenuity of novel communication methods allow our more introverted students to take the mantel and lead in a way that’s more comfortable for them, buoyed by their computer screens, their caring families and their home environments? Might this global epidemic actually unite everyone, through the common threads of resourcefulness, resilience and reaching out?
It’s possible that it’s just my personality, in my DNA, to always see the silver lining in a situation. But mightn’t we all be a bit better off if we try to look through rose-coloured glasses, to see this pandemic for the opportunity that it is, and not just the challenge?
There’s no question that these times are unlike any we’ve ever experienced, and that the lives of today’s kids will all be shaped, in some way, by the events that are continuing to take place right now.
Well, call me a dreamer, but I like to think that these “Covid kids” (or, perhaps, the Covid generation) may actually, like phoenixes rising from the ashes, take all the new skills and attitudes they’ve accumulated by surviving the Corona Virus, and thrive in the post-pandemic landscape they find ourselves in when this is all said and done.
They might just turn out to be the most compassionate, tech-savvy, global-oriented, future-focused social justice and climate activists to ever roam the planet. They might have a unique perspective on what really matters in life that allows them to create and entrepreneur and inspire in completely new and innovative ways.
And, if we focus on that possibility, take aim for it, and help to make it happen… wouldn’t that be a most wonderful thing to come out of so much turmoil and grief?