Learning Through Change

Six months ago, I was preparing for my kids’ spring break adventures and today I am preparing for a school year starting virtually. The past six months has brought change to the whole world, as we are all in this together. Each day brings new information, challenges, and successes. As I reflect on the past six months, I focus on the lessons learned about life as we experience this pandemic.

I have learned first-hand how resilient and adaptable children are. When spring break was extended, my children (then ages four and seven) welcomed the idea of having school at home. However, the following week when my daughter’s school building reopened and my son’s stayed closed, we had to adapt to that social-emotional situation. It taught my children the idea that fairness does not mean things are the same for everyone. Then, when the online learning management system for my son’s school was operational, we had to learn an entirely new way of completing school assignments. This brought on a different level of technology understanding, which even in the last week of required assignments we discovered features of the program. Through it all, I watched my son adapt to the new style of schoolwork and communication with his teachers. It was not easy, but it was good as he learned problem solving and time management skills.

Not only did I learn more about the resiliency and adaptability of my own children, but of kids across the country. I was amazed by the creative ways students held on to school traditions, such as school performances, prom, and graduation. Students were able to use social media to support one another, as well as share their talents with the world. More so, I saw students reaching out to their peers; likewise, older children reaching out to younger ones to help them understand the current times. College and High School graduations speeches gave by students showed the optimism and determination held by the younger generation.

It was not just the children who have displayed resiliency and adaptability through this time. Six months ago, “zoom” meant going fast and now it is a common tool for people to meet and see each other safely. Overnight, businesses have adapted their operations to the challenges of the current times. Creativity is seen everyday as we complete routines for daily living. Most importantly, life has slowed down, and we have taken the time to smell the roses.

No one knows what the next six months will bring, but I do know we will all continue to be resilient and adapt as we grow through this pandemic.

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