College Life Blog

Search all blog posts

Home Schooling: Undergraduate Life at Home during the Pandemic – Part II

Written by Laura Wilson, posted on Monday, March 1, 2021

Laura Wilson (2nd year, English) reflects on what has—and hasn’t—changed during a term working from home during lockdown.

Laura’s fabulous creation: The Gingerbread House I may be far away from Christ Church Meadow, but I’m lucky to live in a beautiful part of the Lake District, with breathtaking views on my doorstep. Instead of breaking up study sessions with college netball and daily treks to Prêt (that queue is one thing I don’t miss), I’ve taken to running and walking with my dog. I like to go out at my favourite time of day, sunset, where everything is just a little bit more magical.

I find having a routine really helps, or it’s easy to let every hour be consumed by work (or, equally, scrolling through TikTok). Another silver lining of being at home is the chance to bake. I haven’t quite topped my Christ Church in gingerbread creation (or Gingerbread HouseTM), but I’ve enjoyed experimenting with things like focaccia bread art and macarons.

Laura in Tom QuadWhile it’s not the same as in-person tuition, I’m extremely thankful for online classes and tutorials, albeit from my childhood bedroom. The work is as fascinating as it ever was, and Teams calls are also a welcome opportunity to speak to people other than my family. With not much else going on, it’s important not to let academic work become your only raison d’être, but having an essay or translation to do does give me a purpose, and the quality of the teaching is one of the only things that hasn’t been negatively affected by the pandemic. Some tutors have been kind enough to put on extra classes and reading groups, knowing that lots of students will appreciate having increased contact time.

Laura’s amazing focacciaIn terms of the social side of student life, there’s no hiding the fact that online events are a poor substitute for the real thing. However, I and many others have enjoyed the events put on so far by our brilliant Entz reps, such as a virtual pub quiz and “Wingo” (Walking Bingo), and I’m sure their plan for a virtual Halfway Hall will make it an event not to miss. Bridge Thursdays might have become Zoom Thursdays, but regular calls with my friends from college have kept us sane. For many, the importance of prioritising mental health has been highlighted by Covid, and personally I find that the people around me — whether they’re right next door or a phone call away — make all the difference. In a world of such uncertainty, some things never change.