Diary of Spain in Lockdown - Virtual schooling begins

Monday 23rd March – Virtual schooling begins

The first hour or two was a bit chaotic; Sofía, along with her entire class, was connected but the teacher thought she was alone, Laura decided to stay in bed an hour longer and skip the PE class, so she was online for the second period but just how “connected” she actually was I’m not so sure.
And it wasn’t long before the Whatsapp started burning with messages of uninvited students appearing in classes, descriptions of teaching teens in pyjamas, others eating breakfast while online and some who were even snuggled up in bed. But at least they were connected.

Meanwhile, María’s instructions had arrived from her tutor (4th year of Primary) and I dutifully printed them out for her, as usual in greyscale, but despite this, by 10:30 we were out of ink. Amazon! Order more! No chance, ink cartridges, it would seem, are rarer now than loo rolls.

And little Helena, more responsible at her five years than her 14-year-old sister, conscientiously did all her allocated pages for the day, except of course for the ones her mother was now unable to print.

As for me, fortunately I haven’t had any live classes yet, so I’ve been making the most of the time recording pronunciation videos, some just of me, others acted out by our Barbie and Ken dolls. Have I found a new skill in making videos? I doubt it, but it seems fun.

Social media is full of ideas for things to do to stop being bored. Bored?! I don’t have enough hours in the day for my normal work plus the extra chores around the house. The poor dog hasn’t been taken for a walk all the time we’ve been in lockdown (let me just add, we do have a sizeable garden for her to run around in) so this evening I finally took her around the block just before 10pm. There were plenty of cars parked outside houses in our residential area, but not a soul was out and about. We didn’t see a single person, a car, not even another dog-walker. Here we’re not allowed to even go out and run or ride a bicycle.

 When I came back we watched Boris Johnson’s address to the nation. Everything he outlined, all the new rules, are just the same as were brought in here just over a week ago: only going out for specific purposes, only going to work if working from home is not possible. I can’t help but wonder why each country makes the same mistakes? Why do governments all react too late? Once the illness has already got a strong hold on the country? Italy waited before bringing in tough measures, Spain, having watched Italy, waited too long as well. Britain, seeing the way things had panned out in both Italy and Spain could have acted faster. The problem with society is that ‘encouraging’ is not enough. It wasn’t enough here in Spain and it hasn’t been enough in Britain either. At first we too were ‘encouraged’ to stay at home, then we were forced. Even though it’s for our own good, not until people are threatened with fines and other consequences will they stay at home.

 

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