It has been over three months since universities resumed but even now some international students are still trickling into the classrooms. Granted many of these classes are now online, but we still get to meet face to face once a week.
As we try to get used to the new ways of teaching, which now include endlessly wrestling with technology by both teachers and students. There are several concerns to take note. The first is the safety of everyone, but then you start to wonder about the effect of students not being able to congregate in little cubicles in the library or the open spaces. What will happen to these hang out spaces?. What about sporting events on campus?
Missing the buzz
I miss the buzz of the university campus, there is something about a noisy campus and the movement of students that reminds me of my own university days. The carefree attitude of some students, the ones that hurry everywhere and there are the ones that never have a clue where they should be at any point in time. The sound of steps like the great Serengeti animal migration just before the hour, the whispers in the corridors like the hissings of a thousand rattle snakes, the head movements of music lovers gyrating from side to side like praying mantis lost in their own little world.
Now, the teachers have visors, the students wear masks, we all keep to the one way system and sanitize ourselves at every opportunity. The earlier we kick the virus, the earlier we can return back to some form of normalcy.
In class, we can usually pick struggling students by the distant looks, their attitudes, the drooping shoulders or the empty gazes, more difficult to spot on line.
The silence is deafening
As I walk around the campus, I wonder when we will return to the days when I can enjoy the many far fetched excuses on why some students turn up late for classes. When I can walk around the classroom again like a soldier on solitary patrol, when I give students a few minutes to work out a problem and I stroll around to check if they are doing what I asked them to do or rather than the latest posting on social media.
Can’t wait for some kind of normalcy to return to campus.
What are your thoughts?