I must say that I have been exposed to the Digital World at quite a young age, thanks to my parents who enrolled me for a variety of courses. I recall five years back when I was doing an Online Stanford Course for English and Maths and I used to look forward to interacting with my teachers and students from around the world. It was interesting.
Then, my parents signed me up for a STEM program from BYJU’s, and learning became more fun for me. I was taught to call up my teacher, ask about my doubts and they would resolve them. So, I guess I was becoming more independent. Then came the Chinese course from YEH CHINA, for which I would log in over the weekend to practice the language. I am now currently doing a Coding Course with WHITEHAT.
I enjoyed going to school, meeting my teachers, playing with my friends, and learning together, which I have now started missing a lot.
I know my teachers are putting in a lot of hard work to organize all the chapters and lessons to teach us, but somehow for a child of my age, I need to have that physical contact. Sometimes, lessons can be taught without saying many words… using body language.
In Mumbai, with the number of COVID-19 cases rising, life is becoming difficult. I see my grandparents becoming more worried about the situation. Every day we thank the almighty that we have some food on our plate. I especially worry about those Dharavi kids whom I had met for my project and they are in extreme conditions. I feel so helpless. Maybe once the new world emerges (says my father) we will have a solution to everything.
Social distancing is quite challenging for a country densely populated like India and slums are a breeding ground. I have personally visited and seen their living conditions. The houses are extremely small and dark, and the drainage system is open with mosquitos and flies everywhere. I think the focus right now should be on educating people and creating a planned city.
I recall that as a child, I used to visit SAMARPAN, an NGO near my house and teach children over there. I was barely 5 years old and would walk there with my grandmother who used to tell me that if we educate them, we can create a new world.
COVID-19 has taught us many lessons:
A) SOCIAL DISTANCING is even creating NEIGHBOURHOODS
B) QUALITY EDUCATION SHOULD BE MADE COMPULSORY FOR ALL