PARKLAND, FL- Due to COVID-19, me and countless other elementary kids are stuck inside with their families, unable to physically go to school. Ugh, if you ask me! Now, we still must do schoolwork, but with a twist. It’s all online, and it’s called virtual learning. How do we do this? Well, in our county we use an application called Clever to go to important websites like Canvas. On Canvas, teachers instruct and assign schoolwork. We have online access to videos, texts, books and an overwhelming variety of resources. Sometimes, I feel lost in this huge selection of material. I don’t like it, yet I don’t hate it. 

It’s a strange and somewhat cool way to learn about every subject. What I find useful is to get organized and manage your time wisely. My teacher also hosts virtual meetings where she reviews our assignments from yesterday, tells us what we’re doing today, and answers our questions. After I’m done with most of my work, me and my family head out for a brief walk. During these walks I find it crazy to stay 6 feet away from people and to resist the urge to pet a dog or to hug a dear neighbor or a friend. Some people who are walking on the same path as my family do weird, karate-like moves, when trying to stay away from us. 

When we head back home, me and my sister resume our work. This usually involves learning about social studies or taking virtual math lessons. My class is participating in a challenge where we read one picture book a day and discuss it, so we must turn in our response too. When this is all over, I work on my projects, like writing and illustrating an informative book. At times, I rely on my family for help and advice involving my schoolwork. They also have a lot of work to do on electronics.

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One downside of virtual schooling is that I miss my friends terribly. The only time I really get to see them is in the morning meeting. Even then we don’t get to converse. For social kids and extroverts like me, these times can get tough and lonely. On the bright side though, I’m safe and healthy, unlike so many other people, which I hope can get better eventually. I also take comfort in knowing that even during quarantine, I still can discover interesting new things and skills with virtual learning. And I can watch a lot of television, too. Excuse me, now I need to go and resume binge-watching my favorite series. Stay safe, everybody.

Emma Chetan is a 5th grade student at Riverglades Elementary School in Parkland.