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We are Wellington [Online] | Modern wizardry

15 March 2020
The Wellington community is drawn from more than 40 nationalities, so it is no surprise that during the COVID-19 outbreak we found ourselves spread all over the world. It’s equally unsurprising that our community of parents, teachers and, most importantly, pupils have risen to the occasion with their usual determination and innovative spirit. As Wellington Online continues – literally taking learning beyond the physical space and into the virtual classroom – we share our community’s stories to help bring us together. Maybe you will find there are Wellingtonians closer to you than you realised. On the first day of e-learning at the breakfast table, my daughter mentioned in passing that she liked coding. This may seem like a small thing in the current digital age, but it had profound impact on me. So much so, that I almost choked on my orange juice. You see, coding was something mythical to me. It was best left to the mathematical geniuses, who whizz their blurred fingers over the keyboard. Modern wizardry and witchcraft, I say! Upon seeing my reaction, my daughter was taken aback. First, she asked me why I would do that to the orange juice and second: “what’s the big deal?” Then – as if it would be the most natural thing in the world – she introduced me to ICT. I adored it on the spot. This is because I was happy to find out that the future (apologies for being dramatic) is so integral in her school life now. Let me explain: My daughter just recently joined Wellington in the autumn of 2019. Before that, she attended a typical and therefore traditional Swiss school. Technology was not part of the curriculum at large and it had been left at that. But being here now in Shanghai, I was surprised how naturally (and dare I say courageously) Wellington embraces modern methods: the use of OneDrive, Doodle Math, Doodle English, Quizlet, Kidsa-z and ICT etc; all of these things would be out of the question where we were just a couple of months ago. This is exactly why the e-learning experience has been so great so far. It’s the beginning of 2020 and we remained in Shanghai. My wife is working to combat the COVID-19 spread from a different side. That is why we basically remain confined in our home. This is fine for us, but more difficult for our daughter.   I miss my friends and teachers. I miss school. She declared with a sigh.   But she understood why things are the way they are. We went into the first day of e-learning by preparing her space: the assignments are spread out, the computers booted and snacks loaded. And the best thing: thanks to the information infrastructure, set up by the Wellington staff, we know exactly what to do. Days went by and we’re currently at week three when I write this. Things are progressing nicely. Chloé (year 4) has found her routine and is able to do most of her tasks with little supervision. Of course, I get the occasional “DADDY!” when the internet gets shoddy, but I am glad she found her groove and can move on to other things. Exactly thanks to the current limitations, she was able to become more creative: Instead of writing a review, why not doing a podcast? Why not produce and edit a video? Why not code your own game? The integration of technology has indeed enabled her and so many others to go beyond the constraints of the situation. I am very grateful for that. That is why Wellington, have the greatest of my gratitude. Thank you for going above and beyond, in bringing knowledge to our children from wherever you are. Thank you for providing the technology and infrastructure in the face of this adverse situation. Thank you for your guidance and encouragements. And thank you especially for looking ahead and preparing our children for the future. Most of all, thank you for turning my daughter into a coding wizard. Minh  (Chloe’s dad) Wellington College Shanghai parent   If you have an e-learning story or experiences during this extended time away from the College, we’d love to hear it. We’re keen to hear from pupils, parents, staff members – anyone from the Wellington community. Please send your experiences, comments and photos to communications.wcis@wellingtoncollege.cn. More relevant articles :