I’m a full-time lecturer, teaching maths at other faculties. I miss spontaneous interactions at the coffee machine with my fellow lecturers and our support staff. For some reason, it’s much harder to have an informal conversation through Zoom.
From a technical perspective, online education runs smoothly – kudos to all of us – but it’s just me sitting in front of a screen, not being able to see my students. Face-to-face education is what charges my batteries, so the last year has been quite tough for me. I have had ups and downs, and off-days when I didn’t accomplish anything. At first, it felt as if I was the only one feeling like this, but when I opened up to my colleagues they responded with their own stories of monotonous days and sleepless nights. My wife has been very supportive. What also helped is realising that someday this will all be over.
I started posting personal messages on Brightspace to have some contact with my students – pictures of my Lego collection, and my not-yet successful attempt at losing the extra weight I gained during all of the restrictions. The students told me it made their lives less of a drag as well. I can’t wait to re-enter the lecture halls and resume face-to-face teaching. And I will continue opening up to my students.