Blog: Seeking Lights in the Dark of MCO by Gwendalyn Huang, Secondary 4
Written by: Gwendalyn Huang, Secondary 4
Editor’s note: Gwendalyn Huang was nominated for Student-of-the-Year Award for the past 3 consecutive years, and she won the award in 2018.
The world has never experienced such an unprecedented lockdown. Just like the rest of the world, the Movement Control Order in Malaysia has been hard for everyone and also for us students. Fortunately, our tech-savvy era has allowed us to be connected even though we are physically apart. Although face to face education is always preferable, it is obvious that the school is doing its best to organise online learning for us by using Google Classroom. We are also provided with digital textbooks when most of us left our textbooks in school. Furthermore, teachers are putting in extra effort to provide us with additional notes and informative videos. They host live meetings and in this way we still have the classroom feel. Classes are conducted according to our usual school timetable from 8 am to 3.40 pm. Being in front of the computer for so long might be harmful to our eyes. Perhaps having short breaks between classes could give our eyes some rest and get ready for the next lesson. 
I can even confirm that we have been busier than ever as I sometimes sit in front of the computer to finish my schoolwork until I was called for dinner. Nevertheless, I would never fail to watch the 5 pm news for the update of COVID19 by Dr Noor Hisham, our Director General of Health. Thus, being at home allows me to take a breather and makes me realise the importance of staying up-to-date with general knowledge. 
Realising the fun of online lessons 
One of the advantages of online lessons over lessons conducted in class is that we have more resources within our grasp. For example, we can easily translate a word using Google translate on our computer, compared to spending more time flipping through a dictionary in school. Additionally, we can replay our recorded online classes in case we missed an important point. Online lessons also train us to be more self-disciplined as we will be more aware of the work we have not complete because Google Classroom would remind us when the deadline is near. Thanks to the muting function and the emojis that are available in Google Meet, I find it interesting that we can give feedback with emojis or raise our hand before asking a question. In this way, we do not interrupt the speaker in mid-speech. 
Changes in sports practices 
Whilst movement has been restricted, we should make good use of our free time by practising our sports and other skills with some modification because of the MCO. On normal school days, I have basketball training three times a week. Although I do not have a hoop at home, I can still practice basic skills such as ball handling. Basic skills are the most essential skill in every sport. Despite that, most of the time we do not put in enough focus on this aspect as practising these basic skills repeatedly could make us feel bored. Instead of pursuing advance skills, with the lockdown, I am reminded to come back to the basic. And I am convinced that the result of strengthening my basic skills will be visible one day. 
Looking at the bright side 
On a countrywide perspective, I can conclude that MCO does play a huge role in terms of character building. It encourages proactiveness as we students are stimulated to self-study and not expecting others to push us to learn. MCO also teaches us to not put the blame on others but to work together against all differences to control the pandemic. Besides, it guides us to be more considerate as we would take measures to prevent ourselves from getting infected. Although some people may think that MCO is violating our freedom as a citizen, we must understand that we have to trade a little bit of our freedom for the benefit and welfare of all Malaysians. Thus, MCO also impacts us to be more obedient and cooperative with our government. 
This paradigm shift is something we should adapt to, not a setback to playing our parts and pursuing our goals. I take this partial quarantine as a chance to improve myself. I believe we should most definitely show our appreciation and support to our COVID19 superheroes in our unique ways. Let’s spread our collective power of positive energy through mutual care and kindness. After this crisis, we are the heroes and survivors that came out of this historical pandemic stronger. Stay safe, stay healthy, and stay home. We are all in this together. Collectively, we can overcome this adversity.