Going back to school during the COVID-19. - Voices of Children

Children tell about their feelings and challenges they face

UNICEF
boy studying
UNICEF/GEO-2020/Jibuti
16 September 2020

Starting a new school year is always full of emotions and especially during a pandemic.

Part of the schools in Georgia started teaching at classrooms, other part continues the distance learning. But children in every city or village are looking forward to meet their friends and teachers in person.  

We asked children to tell what they feel, how their lives have changed and how they handle these challenges.

 


 

 

School Girl
UNICEF/GEO-2020/Jibuti

Natia Samnashvili, 10 years old.

 

"I am happy to return to school. Distance learning was hard, working with computer caused pain for eyes and fingers. I could understand the online lessons, but it was easier when we had face-to-face meetings with the teacher. One more thing I am happy about is to see my friends, meet new teachers. If the lessons were distance again, we won't have a chance to get introduced with teachers. We have new teachers this year." 

 


 

School Boy
UNICEF

Andria Khocholava, 9 years old.

 

"Don’t remind me about online lessons. Going to school is cool. There are many changes though: you can’t hug the teachers, they always wear masks, hugging friends is not allowed either, but we violate this rule sometimes. Breaks are shortened and we have to wash our hands many times. Also, you are not allowed to lend something to others. I am carrying water in the bottle as the water dispensers are turned off. Still, it’s good to go to school. We are repeating the materials from the previous year and I understand everything better in class than on the online lesson. We have a new game called “Coronobana” – it’s like a game of catch." 

 


 

School Girl
UNICEF/GEO-2020/Jibuti

Teona Jghiradze, 13 years old.

 

"I didn’t have a personal computer and was attending online lessons from a mobile phone. We had to either write the homework in the workbook and then send the photo of it or type it on the keyboard.  Sometimes there were technical problems with the internet or electricity and we were missing the lessons, now we will cover those materials too. I am happy to return to school, it was boring at home and also I missed my friends and I am happy to see them."

 


 

boy studying
UNICEF/GEO-2020/Jibuti

Lasha Devlarishvili, 11 years old.

 

"Yes, I am happy to return to school. It was boring at home. I was playing or reading books. In school, there will be more positivity and better learning process". 

 


 

Girl in classroom
UNICEF

Elene Melikadze, 12 years old.

 

"Online classes were interesting at the beginning, but now I think going to school is better. We could only see the face of the teacher at online lessons, eyes were getting tired and you miss the human interaction. But it was good that the exams were cancelled.

Now I am back to school. My friends got taller in this period. I am happy to return to school because I can see the people and talk to them. I am having fun on breaks, but we all remember that we must be careful. We have to avoid getting the virus or transfer it. Yes, we have lots of homework, but I don't complain. I like school and I am happy. If the online lessons are back, I don't know what will I do. I think I will start drawing instead of studying."

 


 

School boy
UNICEF

Data Sulaberidze, 10 years old.

 

"I am happy to return to school because I really missed my friends and teachers. I love school and I think that interaction with my peers is part of the education process." 

 


 

School Girl
UNICEF

Nino Khvichia, 10 years old.

 

"I am very happy to go back to school. I was very nervous on the first day about the mandatory distance, and I was looking forward to hug everyone, I missed everyone so much. I am getting up early in the mornings not to be late and get to school early. Sometimes I was forgetting about the lessons when we were on distance learning and could not join the classes, could not interact with children normally and sometimes I was shy to ask questions. I love the lessons held in school, they are more interesting and joyful." 

 




 

School Boy
UNICEF

Giorgi Alavidze, 6 years old.

 

"School is good. Very good. It is fun there. There are many friends of mine from kindergarten. We have two new students too and I made friends with one of them. From lessons, I like Georgian more than math, teachers read books and it is like a literature club. I like drawing club too. I want the breaks to be longer to have more time for playing with friends. I want to go to school by school-bus and make friends with more people. Teachers were masks and gloves at school. I know if anyone catches the virus in school, it will be closed again."

 


 

School Boy
UNICEF

Aleksandre Alasania, 7 years old.

 

"I was happy to return to school. It was different though, our class was split into half. We wore masks and maintain the distance, and we could not play and "go crazy".

When we turned back to distance learning, I was very upset. I am not able to communicate with friends and miss them. The software is always laggy during the lessons, I can't hear the voice well. When everyone starts to talk together, I am getting tired and turning off the software. We again have to sit at home to avoid getting infected by "Conora" (he calls Coronavirus like that)."