I think that everyone can agree that it’s been an interesting school year!  When I walked into Gleneagle Secondary for the first time in the Fall, I certainly didn’t expect that I would only be spending half of the year at school.  Whether we liked it or not, we were forced to adapt to a learning environment without teachers, classrooms, or even our friends.  And well at the beginning of online school, it kind of fun to be able to learn in my pajamas, it wasn’t long before I was missing the way school used to be without the restrictions that came with a global pandemic.  I generally found it harder to stay motivated without physically going to school, and the time management skills I’d built at the beginning of the year were slowly slipping away.  Sure, school could be stressful and loud, but when we all went to school there was a strict, consistent routine that we had to follow, and friends and teachers that helped us keep motivated along the way.  As much as I tried to replicate a regular school days’ routine when online learning first started, I eventually ended up letting go and just feeling down and unmotivated most of the time.  However, it was nice to be able to do homework in my bed and have a quieter environment to learn in.  Throughout online learning, I found that technology often impeded my ability to be more active outside, as during school I had the option of going outside during lunch break, but at home I was constantly staring at a screen and at the end of the day I was still doing all of my homework on my laptop, with online learning limiting the mediums that I could work with (physical artwork was less convenient to submit than digital work).  Therefore, my Creative Thinking Core Competency helped me transition into online learning, since I had to think outside of the box to create memorable pieces of work despite restrictions.  For example, one of my assignments for English was to create a mind map.  Instead of just using some kind of digital program to complete the assignment, I decided to create my mind map on paper and then scan it onto my computer.  That way, I was more able to creatively express myself.  Finally, I feel like my Critical Thinking was improved the most through online learning because despite feeling less motivated I still had to maintain some of my work ethic.  To do this, I kept an online To-Do list to keep track of my deadlines.    


The mind map I completed for English.


An example of the To-Do list I’ve been using to keep track of my deadlines.

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