The Future is Coming

selective focus photography of woman using macbook pro

Photo by cottonbro on

As I get over the hump in another week of online teaching, I have had some time to reflect and wonder what will come of all this.  I don’t mean the virus and the impact prolonged social distancing will have.  We may change our social habits, but we will still want to be social.  I was thinking more about work.

If you have had to transition to working from home, you may find it frustrating and not particularly appealing.  I know that I don’t.  I don’t miss the commute, though I no longer have weird and wonderful people to write about.  That was a big part of my blog.  Being stuck on a commuter bus definitely required some grasping at positives to make the journey less awful.

The thing is, once you’ve proven that working from home is possible, will they want you to come to work?  The company could save on office space and other overhead costs.  Maybe this is the new norm.

Being thrust into a new situation probably forced us to learn new skills and new techniques.  While stressful, this is not a bad thing.  And if you went to work and stared at a computer screen at your desk, then this isn’t much different.

I am used to teaching in a classroom and interacting with students a bit differently.  I didn’t spend my time staring at a screen, but rather looking at the students faces for signs of comprehension or confusion.  It isn’t as easy on screen, but I may have to get used to it.  This might be the future.

Who am I kidding.  This is the present for lots of people.  I have been hearing about online tutoring jobs for Chinese students for the past couple of years.  I never looked into it because I wasn’t interested.  However, a new source of income might be needed.

I ramble on because I am reflecting on my job and wondering how it will all turn out.  When I started writing I was thinking about how the nature of work is rapidly changing and might not change back…then I seemed to get a bit sidetracked and wound up here.  I guess that isn’t much different from the way things are for all of us.

If you have been transitioned to working from home during this time, I would like to hear about your experience and what you think will happen in the future.

About Anthony

I am: equal parts rebel, romantic and shockingly average Joe. a writer trapped inside of an ESL teacher's body. an introverted attention seeker. a teacher who hopes one day to be called "Captain, my Captain." an intellectual who can do some very dumb things. a person whose Japan experience, despite being so long ago, still exerts a strong influence upon him. a lover of books, music, beer, hockey and Pizza.
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11 Responses to The Future is Coming

  1. For what it’s worth I doubt in-class teaching is over. There may be impacts with distance learning, which was probably coming anyway, and is just a reality sooner than anticipated. I also predict a yo-yo effect after the epidemic in Canada has peaked, with a resurgent of similar social distancing protocols continuing to intersperse the new normal over the coming years.

    But completely abolishing classrooms? I’m not convinced this is what people really want.

    Now, other jobs…I can’t help but think that a partial solution to our gridlock induced air pollution is imminent…

    Time will tell.

  2. Margie says:

    I think it will be the new norm. I too have to look at doing something new.

  3. Lkvy says:

    If this improves accessibility for deaf people, I’m all for it!

    Online bike repairing isn’t going to be a thing, thankfully. I really miss my job!

  4. Sarah says:

    Your predictions are usually accurate, and this is going to be the new norm. Being resistant to change, I will probably fight it the best I can and will only come around to it when all the others have found ways to take advantage of the situation. Story of my life!

    I miss the class though and when we go back (if I ever get to go back), I will love my job in a different way. I will enjoy every moment more and I don’t think you will hear me complaining about classes, books or students 🙂

  5. retrodee says:

    I don’t think I could ever take a class online. I considered it when I was going to the Junior College, as they offered some online courses, but I knew I’d never be able to concentrate enough on my own to finish the course. Unless I’m super interested in something, I can’t learn it on my own. I need in-person interaction to learn things like math, or science or something that’s not at the top of my interests list. Just my two cents as a former student.

  6. Jinjer says:

    I’ve been working from home for almost 4 years now and I hope I never have to go back to an office.

    As for what I think will happen in the future, well, I hope a lot of companies see how valuable a work from home option is and make it a permanent option. Notice I said option because I understand that some people prefer going to an office.

    As for you teachers, I think teaching in person, in a classroom is probably better overall, right?

  7. Kate says:

    One lesson will be learned here: being grateful what we have, where we live and our health.

    And once this is over and you haven’t been laid off yet, much more grateful.

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