Life During Lockdown

Courtesy of Raz Latif on productivity.

Courtesy of Raz Latif on productivity.

Amanda Peck

   During these trying times amid COVID-19, the world has come to a stand-still economically and socially. In the learning community, teachers and students are trying to continue with classes online and keep on as regular of a schedule as possible – which is no doubt a challenge in the face of such uncertain times. 

   When asked if she thinks her education quality remains the same after transitioning to all online classes, Alessia D’Eusebio, a second year student at El Camino College, replied, “No, not at all.” D’Eusebio explains how “in-person classes provide a better understanding and level of comprehension that a digital education just can’t match.” 

   Among many college students who had expected a normal and in-person education, the question of whether tuition costs will be reduced, returned, or rolled over to the next semester has been raised. D’Eusebio doesn’t know how the situation should be carried out but she thinks students “should definitely get money back in some way because they are allowing students to drop classes without notations and refunds if students can’t take online classes. In my case I don’t want to drop any classes or waste time. We are being forced to do online classes which we didn’t pay for so I would like some sort of compensation.”

   College students are not the only ones who are facing situations they’d never imagined. Taylor Fjellstrom (12) is a member of the Drill team at West High. Drill’s competition season was cancelled the week classes were dismissed. “The last week we were in school … state and two other national competitions were cancelled. It’s just so hard because it was supposed to be our last competition season as seniors.” Having your last season of your sport cancelled is a big hit the senior class has had to take. Not only is the 2020 senior class losing electives and sports, they are also losing activities such as prom, grad night, senior sunset, and many other events that high school students look forward to for all four years. 

   Fjellstrom explains how upset she is: “I’ve worked so hard throughout my whole education with stressful nights, mental breakdowns, and disappointments because of school and I’m not going to be able to have any fun or reward for it.” Fjellstrom is most likely leaving California this summer to continue her education at Ball State in Indiana. “It’s my one chance to see all of these people again in the same place and now I’m never going to get that.” 

   Not only are the seniors facing a somber time, but all high schoolers. Danielle Ciscel (9) expected a drastically different experience of her first high school year. “It’s not fun at all, it doesn’t feel like the freshman experience everyone talks about.” Many would think online classes would be a vacation or a godsend, but Ciscel, like many others, “prefers to be in class” rather than out of it. 

   On the bright side, this lockdown does provide time that none of us would typically have. Alessia D’Eusebio says that “I have  almost no time [normally] due to school work but when I’m not studying I’m cooking or baking.” D’Eusebio advises people to “do their work when they would typically be in that class and to find shows on Netflix or Hulu to pass the time.” This is not a usual time, so everyone has had to improvise and find ways to maintain sanity and stay productive outside of the classroom. Taylor Fjellstrom has “started running and working out every morning because I don’t have Drill anymore and I’ve started doing house work like cleaning and fixing things.” Fjellstrom claims that “working out has given [her] a purpose and [she’s] savoring this extra time [she] wouldn’t usually have.”

   It is always good to look on the bright side of the situation and people like Fjellstrom, Ciscel and D’Eusebio definitely are doing just that. Whether it be meditation, yoga, exercise, cooking, painting, reading, writing, cleaning, etc. it is especially important to stay productive and mindful at this time and to maintain a schedule so that when the time comes for life to resume, we may find our way back to normalcy a bit easier.