Online Learning at College Fall 2020

My First Week learning Online through Okanagan College Design by Christine Reeves using Canva

“Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there some day.” Winnie the Pooh

It seems like there is this urgency to have everything work and be in order for there to be success in the classrooms. I watched the Professors online struggle as they tried to make this online experience less painful for us the students. But, behind the names of students that flowed in I saw a lot of Professors apologizing for the delay and the technical challenges that popped up with students and with the systems that really we didn’t have much control over. Nothing was smooth, nor was it easy, there was static, background noise, some had video, some didn’t. One class I had the videos of faces swirling every second which made me dizzy.

I tend do better when I am in a classroom setting. I find I am more focused and attentive maybe more disciplined. This Pandemic has caused quite the attention all over the world, many have lost their lives and some are breezing through it with lingering symptoms that last and continues to last with no end in sight. Covid 19 has floated into every home if not from the media it has come in through the phone, through the walls of space and time. Comparatively to the Pandemic of the Spanish flue in 1918, society itself has shut down but Covid 19 differed in the fact that we have moved into a new era of culture, communication and changed ‘live-in’ spaces. We are seeing an undercurrent of turbulence, that keeps coming unnannounced really. Precautions are taken, staying home as much as possible and yet this moment has created quite the urgency to have everything work out and have it done concisely, and perfectly.

There is no doubt about it we are adjusting, we have moved our studies online and the College is sorting all the kinks. What I find most interesting is how each Professor engages the students in this new space of learning. I am grateful for being in this time and age it gives me the chance to step back and reflect on my own learning space, how Covid 19 has changed how I look at learning and what it is that I can do to slow myself down and be ready for the messy and unpredictable side of life online and off. Don’t get me wrong I always new life is unpredictable, but this is a different messy its a ‘wired’ messy, a strange encounter with pixels and codes that form on the screen through transmission of sound and light.

We are making history, and yet on the ground level of things, we are repeating history just in a different way. Are we ready for messy? I think so.

There is something beautiful about messy and turbulent it breathes life and forces us to focus and stay awake in life. The best part of learning online is to push ourselves out of our own comfort zones into a new media a new excitement of engaging ourselves in a small space. It’s like the space in my office, a blank wall gives me the expanse of creating ‘story’ in ways I would never have created thanks to Okanagan College.

‘I walk by the river, and pieces of me leaves traces underneath like rocks beneath the current, life flows smoother over time, if we simply let it be.’

Published by Okanagan Valley View

Mother, SFO, daughter, sister, friend, volunteer, employee for Interior Health

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