I would like to start my article with a saying “The only thing that is constant is change”. This means the current pandemic time will also change and we will again live life as we did before the lockdown, however with more discipline.
With this COVID-19 pandemic affecting almost all the living beings across the globe positively or negatively, the life of humans is switched from offline to online mode. And in this affected group, children or students in my belief are affected the most as this is the group that likes to be outside the house most of the time, using some formula or the other. According to MHRD’s (Pragyata Guidelines) over 240 million children of the country who are enrolled in schools are impacted due to COVID-19.
Children and school students are missing their outdoor and school activities like Annual Function, Annual Meet, Annual Sports Day, Parents-Teacher meetings, Excursions, Outdoor Trips and Picnics, Intra and Inter-School Competitions, etc. The outdoor activities or physical activities have many benefits like physical fitness, combat depression, reduced risk of obesity, mental fitness, and improved immunity system, etc.
The face-to-face interaction of the children with the teachers, coaches, tutors, friends, etc. has come to halt and switched to e-interface via virtual platforms like Google Meet, MS Teams, Zoom, etc. The face-to-face interaction not only gives an emotional connection to the communication but also allows us to learn about the body postures and use it as per the need & occasion, which is missing in the current mode of communication.
Children or school students have been enforced to be housed locked and are facing a lot of challenges at this time. Some of the challenges are related to the online learning like inadequate know-how of the technology, unavailability of digital devices, especially extra smartphone for digital learning, poor connectivity, long hours in front of the screens, etc.
The next big problem being faced by the children is of no physical activity (all work and no play) which may lead to a lot of problems like depression, reduced immunity, high risk of obesity, etc. They are being forced to use the digital platform for their entertainment and even for coaching classes like basketball, etc.
In this crucial and difficult time, parents are playing a vital role in their children’s physical health and mental wellbeing. Parents are required to spend more time now with their children by regular interaction, watch any sign of anxiety and depression, playing indoor or offline games, getting involved in physical activities like yoga, aerobics, exercise, etc. Parents are also required to keep a tap on the usage of the internet by the children, and sensitizing them on the cybersecurity practices.
To conclude I would like to mention Roy T. Bennett’s quote “Instead of worrying about what you cannot control, shift your energy to what you can create.”
Nonetheless, let’s hope this bad time will fly and commit today that we will learn from this period which is going to make our future brighter and more peaceful.