Murphy’s Law is a concept that can be frequently observed when it comes to technology and taking online classes. Every puzzle piece including: WiFi, multiple people operating and maintaining their own devices, and learning how to troubleshoot a new online platform, must all align for online classes to run smoothly. To start this week of class there were detrimental technical difficulties which shortened class and wreaked havoc, but this did not stop us from completing our tasks.
Paul Blom, the teacher of our English 105 class, began to experience a slow internet connection. This caused him to sound like a robot and his voice would completely cut out at times. This unfortunately disrupted the flow of our schedule for the day, but Paul was able to adapt and overcome. He sent us messages in the chat which told us what we would do, and we did as much as was possible without hearing him speak. Breakout rooms gave us a chance to discuss our assignments and make use of the class period, and after this class was over. We were sent the lecture later when his WiFi was fixed and got all the content we needed to succeed as well as an extension on the related assignment.
When the next class came, all technical problems were resolved and we had a normal class period. The biggest activity of the day was a large PowerPoint on thesis statements to make sure we do well on our Feeder 3.2 worksheet. This was extensive and in detail and gave us all the tools we need to not only be successful in this class, but all other classes that will require essays in the future. To solidify our knowledge we also did an activity where we picked the best thesis statement out of a pair. This gave us a chance to see the mistakes others have made as well as good examples of what to do in our own work from several different types of paper.
To conclude, the effort that goes into us having online class each day is not lost on any of us. When there are such small issues that create large disruptions in an instant, it makes the fact that we can have class at all during a pandemic seem quite impressive. COVID-19 has caused us to have distance from one another and taken away the ability to engage each other in conversation easily, but technology, even though it can crash and burn, brings us together and allows us to learn English together. The Zoom lessons are always useful, and the breakout room discussions have made it easier for me to meet people than it has been in any of my other classes. Overall, this class is one of my favorites despite all the uncontrollable errors, and a large part of my respect for the class comes from all of our abilities to adapt and continue to pursue knowledge when it seems everything else is working against us during this difficult year.
Sebthilnathan, Aparnaa. “Technical difficulties” YouTube, uploaded by MrSenthil254, 20 Oct. 2011, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AcKgZo4s0kY