eLearning Hasn't Stopped Me

Students at PPHS

eLearning hasn’t stopped me from brightening my future…

by: Colten Lewis

PPHS Junior

Hello, I’m Colten Lewis. Five weeks ago, I was in high school as a Junior living my best life I could. I was doing typical things: hanging out with friends, going to the gym, and watching many many hours of TikToks. A couple of weeks later COVID-19 hit, and then, I was a high school junior isolated in my room still watching many many hours of Tik Toks.  As much as that may sound like a paradise to some teens, I actually felt lonely and empty. I didn’t get the pleasure to laugh with my friends anymore or work on fascinating projects. School for me is a place that sparks motivation and keeps me busy, it almost in a sense gives me more purpose and without it, I found myself lost. 

These past weeks have been difficult. When I learned that COVID-19 was going to close my school down for the rest of the year I was in total shock. I wondered to myself, ”What in the world am I going to do with myself these next few months!?” The stay at home order forces me to be by myself. I can not go to school, so now what? In these types of situations, I find myself watching hours of comedic videos,  then end up feeling bad that I did absolutely nothing useful with my time. That's when my school announced that we would be doing eLearning for the rest of the year. How were they going to complete a whole entire school quarter online, it sounded insane.

What is more insane is I thought I was just going to be staring at my computer screen doing a whole bunch of math problems and reading online articles; but, I was wrong. Everything almost seemed the same, including my schedule, assignments, and teachers...just with the added adventure of being in my living room.  Classes started the following Monday. I woke up at 8:30, 15 minutes before my school actually started, made myself somewhat presentable and hopped on Google Hangouts to start my first class of the day. There awaited my favorite homeroom teacher and all my classmates, all that loneliness I was experiencing before slowly started to go away. Getting to hear the voices of my friends and teachers again was a giant relief. 

The rest of my day went on, class to class. It felt like a typical day despite the fact it was all online. Typically when I do not do anything school-related for long periods of time like on breaks, I end up forgetting everything that I learned from before. The prior year of high school all of what I learned went down the drain during summer break. I have to keep reminding myself how fortunate I am that I am able to continue my education even after this horrible chain of events that have changed everyone's day to day life. Technology has enabled me to continue to get a thriving education, mental support, and resources from my teachers. 

Now as I continue this new brand of education, learning the ropes of how we can be completely changed by technology, all I can say is how amazed by how my teachers/coaches were able to adapt with me. During these harsh times, it has opened my eyes as to what impact that technology can have on someone's life, from it being the sole way I get my education from being at a loss when people lose power. As I continue my education I await to finally be able to embrace my friends and see my teachers once again. I urge everyone to take advantage of the technology they have, it will surprise you as it did for me. Take this time to reflect on all the times you had in school before COVID-19 came upon us. All those memories will continue throughout eLearning. 

Published on 4/13/2020