A few things that I’ve learnt in this tumultuous period during the IB.
In about 1 full year of the IB at Australian International School, I’ve had the (unfortunate) chance to experience the diploma programme through online means and face to face. To say that online school has been life changing would probably be an understatement. I, and I’m sure many other IB students, have been confronted with many self-realizations and coping mechanisms to handle the unlucky situation that everyone has to experience in Vietnam’s worst COVID-19 outbreak. I’ve been doing a lot of reflecting on what's currently happening and how I’ll move forward, here are a few things that I’ve learnt in this tumultuous period during the IB.
- Having no regrets
I need to put my mental health first, above a math test or an English essay or any other assignment. Of course, that isn't to say that I use my mental health to get out of doing work. It just means that I won't sacrifice 1 hour of relaxation and disconnection from online school for 1 extra hour to perfect that essay that I've been working on for 2 weeks. I've learnt that I'm not a machine, my best changes everyday. Some days I feel extremely motivated to do the work that I've assigned and some days, the result of being stuck inside an apartment for 2-3 months straight crashes down on me and I can't focus enough to do any work. Learning more about my limits and having that balance has helped me realise that if I've done my best for a certain assignment, given the circumstances of that time, I'll be happy with the result.
- The importance of time management
This one’s probably a given but felt too important not to mention. To help me focus and ignore distractions from online school, I’ve had to learn through trial and error about what conditions help me through online school. Everyone works differently and so when I tried to follow a friend’s schedule to be more productive, it wouldn’t work. Learning my own study habits has probably helped me move forward not only in IB, but hopefully in my future years of university and independence.
- Keeping friendships
Having older friends leave to another country while you can’t even say goodbye face to face just sucks. Not being able to create more memories with friends while I can before university isn’t fun for anyone. Yet, this lockdown has taught me that I have to be responsible to maintain the friendships that I have. Checking up, talking, video calling are all the things that aren’t mandatory as we’re not face to face anymore so doing it feels more fulfilling. They say that distance makes the heart grow fonder and well, true enough. My connection with friends has made this period a bit less dreadful and I definitely can’t wait to hang out with my friends, and who knows, maybe I’ll become an extrovert after this is all over! (Not really).