When asked how do I feel about the current educational reality in Belize in light of COVID19? Optimistic! This word accurately describes my feelings in light of our current reality in Belize in regards to education.
Ever since the Coronavirus started and spread all over the globe, it has drastically changed our lives. Total shutdown of schools, businesses, an overwhelming number of deaths, and a fair amount of uncertainty.
It is estimated that over 1.2 billion students have been out of the classrooms globally due to this pandemic. In the beginning, I’m sure many students, like myself, had welcomed the “break” from school, as we were hoping to be back in the classroom sooner than later. As time went on, I realized that this was not going to happen and we would have to adjust to a “new normal”.
The way we learn has definitely changed and that is the reason why I’m optimistic. We have seen how technology has helped to change the way we look at education. There has been an increase of use in video conferencing tools such as Zoom, learning platforms such as Google Classroom, Khan Academy, WhatsApp groups, and many more virtual tools. Research has shown that some benefits of online schooling are that: we have more time to ourselves that we can both handle our career goals and school, it gives us self- discipline and responsibility, as well as self-paced learning.
Learning is no longer confined to the traditional classroom for students in Belize. Yes, we must note that this is not an easy adaption for many students, especially those without the Internet or a device that is compatible with these learning platforms.
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