Don’t ‘lockdown’ your mind, discover opportunities in adversity

4 min read

Dr Amrita Dass

The ‘Can Do’ spirit can help us sail through these challenging times of the Coronavirus Pandemic, making the most of our ‘stay at home’ weeks. (Pic source:

We are living through an unprecedented and unforeseen global emergency. While meticulously following all the guidelines for preventing the spread of the contagious and dreaded COVID 19, let’s discover opportunities in adversity from the ‘splendid isolation ‘ of our homes.

There are infinite ways of utilising the ‘bonus time’ at our disposal while optimising our academic/ work-from-home commitments.

School and college teaching have very quickly and efficiently leapfrogged from the chalk-and-talk Education 2.0 mode to the online-blended learning sessions of Education 4.0. I have got feedback from principals who have implemented this new process of learning that students are finding it engaging and also enjoying the sessions.

Mr John Bagul, Principal, South City International School, Kolkata, forwarded the following message from a parent, which will help you see the silver lining.

Lockdown time is indeed a bonus to enhance one’s knowledge, pursue hobbies/ interests and upgrade employability skills. Here’s a look at how we can do all this:

1) Join customised online courses

Many globally renowned experts and professors are delivering an incredible range of online courses in Art, MusicFilm-makingPhotography and Creative Writing to subject-specific specialisations through platforms like Coursera, Udemy, Khan Academy, etc. Some of these are free. For many others, you have to pay a nominal amount for the certificate, in case you want one.

MIT has excellent open courseware which can be freely accessed by anyone.

Right now, the latest ‘in demand’ transferable knowledge and skills across most jobs are Design ThinkingDigital MarketingAnalyticsUX Design and Entrepreneurship, to name a few.

2) Showcase talent

This is the time when you can make videos showcasing your talents in dance, music, acting, stand-up comedy, film-making and direction, culinary arts, yoga and more. Upload these videos on IGTV (Instagram), YouTube or any other video-sharing platform.

Write blogs, stories, poetry and share widely.

All this will build your portfolio and be invaluable in enhancing your profile for college / university / job placements.

3) Discover more and share your resources

People and organisations across the world have reached out with so much compassion and generosity of spirit which is indeed heart-warming. Some of these laudable initiatives are:

– Free audio books on the Amazon website

– 700 free online books from the Cambridge Press

– Free classes by the Study Hall Foundation

– Daily ballet performances live-streamed by Russia’s famous Bolshoi Theatre till April 2.

– Virtual Visits to 17 European Museums

– Free online concerts

4) Reach the unreached

Owing to the lockdown, hundreds and thousands of unskilled workers, daily wage earners and their families are without any income.

Let’s support the initiatives started by some reliable NGOs that are distributing supplies to ease the burden of this section of the society. One such initiative is by the Lucknow’s Community Welfare School, which is distributing dry food packets containing 5 kg rice / 5 kg wheat flour, 2 kg pulses, half-a-litre of cooking oil, half-a-kilo of salt and 2 packets of pickle. The supply is meant to meet the weekly needs of a family of four.

I look forward to your insights, ideas and suggestions!

Stay Well! Stay blessed!

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