Access to HE Lecturer's Reflections on Lockdown Teaching

The following poem has been written by Laura Walker, an Access to HE Lecturer at Lancaster and Morecambe College. It is dedicated to the Access to HE students from Lancaster and Morecambe College - with thanks for a fantastic year.

Teaching in Slippers: An AHE Lecturer’s Reflection on Remote Learning

Presenting on Teams to initials on screen sometimes feels like performing a soliloquy. Hands up at random while their owners deny them and missing a muted epiphany. 

Students are flung from the class as their internets crash and the e-books still are not working. There’s a sudden furore when the post hits the floor, setting Matilda off barking. The only answer in chat was typed by a cat and I’m three weeks behind on my marking. 

I’m wearing slippers but nobody snickers; how can they when they’re still in bed?  I goggle in shock – my washing’s in shot – I’m sure I’d spotlighted my head! With deadlines approaching – yes, we are still recording – submissions appear in earnest. Those using Chromebooks find there’s no love lost and wish they’d bought Mac Pros instead. 

Without being too candid, extensions were granted, still social lives seem like a thing of the past. Time loses meaning with spare bedroom streaming, yet somehow I’m having a blast! A message appears and I’m sensing tears: somebody wants a ‘quick chat’. Quite a while later, crisis averted.  Five minutes – you’re having a laugh! 

Credits accrued, our journey concludes, it’s time to go separate ways. It’s been such a pleasure to share your endeavours but now university awaits. If it all gets too much and you want to give up, just think of the progress you’ve made. Only with dedication can we reach self-actualisation: what we are gifted for must be attained. 

Laura Walker
Access to HE Lecturer's Reflections on Lockdown Teaching
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