Even as online classes have benefited a considerable number of students, especially from the elite private schools, many have struggled to adjust to this new stay-at-home lifestyle. Many educators said that the students are being affected physically as well as emotionally as they are not able to meet their friends and play outdoors now.
Sanjay Shah, physical education teacher of DPS Digboi, said, “Children channelise their energy through sports activities, which is not happening now. As a result, students were getting depressed and there could have been a long-term effect on them if normal school activities did not start soon. Many parents are saying that their children have become irritated while staying within the confines of their homes.”
Physical education teacher of Little Star Senior Secondary School, Digboi, Nitu Gogoi, said the lockdown has affected the health of many children. “As only a few students could exercise regularly during the lockdown phases, the mental and physical health of students have been affected, said Gogoi, who welcomed the move to reopen schools and colleges in the state from Monday.
Vice-principal of Holy Brook Sr. Secondary School, Tinsukia, Rajubala Baruah, said that all physical activities had almost come to a halt for students who stopped going to schools. “Students are now facing health issues like laziness and fatigue. Some of them are even suffering from detrimental behavioural changes,” she said.
Some academicians said that as children were now spending most of their time playing video games, watching movies or chatting online, many of them may lose interest in physical activities. Many feel that the lack of socialisation and the exposure to mobile games for long hours can make children more arrogant and aggressive.
“Many parents don’t want schools to reopen as they fear that their children might get infected. Many private school students are happy attending classes online. Smartphones and laptops are now an integral part of students’ life but strict supervision is a must to control their behavioural pattern,” said educationst Riddhi Paul, whose 17-year-old boy will appear for the Class XII board examinations next year.
Meanwhile, for children who want to attend classes on campus, their guardians have to give their ascent in a form that will be distributed by schools.