Learning under Lockdown #3 | Maritzburg College

Learning under Lockdown #3

Learning under Lockdown #3

6th former Matthew Smith shares his experience of Learning under Lockdown

For everyone this type or style of learning all seemed a little strange, a little out of the ‘norm’ as students refer to it.

As a matric student my inner child immediately clicked into gear when I heard school was closing early; longer holidays, more free time to relax and do my own thing! Yet reality had to reign that inner child in to realize this was affecting the most influential year of my life and also cutting short the year I had been dreaming about since the start of my Grade 8 year at my magnificent school.

At first the emotions were of excitement of an adventure that I hadn’t been through however, as the time passed by and days turned into weeks, I began to realize that this is more serious than what I first thought about and my new found freedom was being taken away from me with the complete lockdown of the country. I felt suddenly trapped and overwhelmed by the emotions of not being able to do what I wanted to do and confined to the boundaries of my own house with no socializing that I, as a human being, desperately needed. The media hype over this virus began to affect me emotionally and I found myself in a constant turmoil. Thoughts racing through my head clouding my judgement and too much information to process. It was taking over my body like a virus to a host. Nothing I did helped to get rid of the feeling of being overwhelmed until I stopped listening to the news. I stopped letting the virus of media hype affect me emotionally and suddenly I felt cured of a virus which was taking away my happiness and calm state of mind.

I had clarity and my goals appeared clearer and not as impossible as they seemed before. Finally, I was able to set my mind to my tasks and focus. Learning became easier as I found my own ways to tackle the tasks at hand. I became master of my own thoughts and activities and when something needed to be completed it was up to me. I was accountable for my own actions. Working at my own pace was the best part about this type of learning as I was able to balance work with play. Home life started to integrate into my work routine making work more pleasurable to do and the pressure of school routine eased off. It gave me a glimpse of what university studies may feel like and broadened my mindset to a new way of learning.  I am fortunate to have two sisters at university doing online work so I have an idea of what is expected. I was now working for my self and not just for marks. This became extremely satisfying and drove me to work harder. I realized pleasing myself is all I needed to do. It grew my mindset astronomically.

However, the thought of missing the most amazing year of friends and sport has never left me. It saddens me still to know I have lost that time but drives me more to make what little time we have left count. The missing of our reunion day which is highly cherished in our school society deeply saddens me. So as a fellow student to other students, break your time up enough for work and play, never take things for granted, cherish your family time, don’t burn yourself out as we all need to take time out, don’t let the virus of over information infect you.

Focus on the good things in life and always remember,

“continuous effort not strength is the secret to unlocking your potential” – Eleanor Roosevelt