Project Description

Surviving
Coronavirus

Don’t stop thinking about tomorrow
Fleetwood Mac give a little hope during lockdown

Daaaaaaaaaad!’ said my 10-year old daughter Victoria, known as Toolie.
Hmm?’ I replied, not looking up from my laptop.
Are the schools closed because we are all going to die?
Yes, Toolie. We’re all going to die,’ I said, still focused on my screen.
Really?’ asked her 11-year old sister, Elizabeth, known as Bizzie; she’s a worrier.
Yes,’ I said typing furiously. ‘Just not today and hopefully not for many, many years.’ I looked up, ‘Don’t you two have a school lesson online?’
We’re on a break,’ said Bizzie. ‘Well I am. Toolie has switched her camera off and is on mute.
Toolie, follow your lesson.’  I ordered.
It’s history. And it’s boring!’ Toolie protested, looking ready to kill her sister.
History of what?’ I asked.
Greece!’ she said.
Obviously, we live in Greece.’ I countered. ‘Which bit? Greece has a lot of history.
I know Dad. That’s the problem, too much! I can’t know it all!’ Toolie reasoned.

I opened my mouth to reply but before I could Bizzie asked, ‘What are you doing Dad?
I looked back at my laptop. ‘A report,’ I growled.
What report?’ Bizzie pressed.
It’s a survey about what adults think about learning.’ I said.
What do they think about it?‘ Bizzie enquired.
‘I don’t know yet that’s why I’m working on it!’ My heart sank as my voice rose.
I used to like learning at school,’ said Bizzie.
Me too,’ said Toolie. ‘Except history…and maths…oh and I don’t like…
Never mind what you don’t like, Toolie,’ I interrupted sharply, ‘switch that computer back on and follow your lesson!

She looked at her computer screen, smiled and announced calmly, ‘It’s finished now. I’m on a break.’
I sighed, defeated. ‘Where’s your mum?’ I asked looking around
‘She’s lying down with a headache,’ said Bizzie.’It started during my maths lesson, just before my break.
And her headache got worse during my history lesson,’ added Toolie. ‘That’s why I put my computer on mute to stop the noise. I don’t think Mum likes Greek history either…and she’s Greek!
I stared into space and thought deeply. I love my girls. They are bright, active and funny. Precisely the type of children you don’t want to be shut up with indoors for days on end.
My wife, Evvie, came into the room. ‘How’s your head?’ I asked.
Full,’ she replied. ‘I am multiplying fractions while invading Egypt with Alexander the Great!
Well, I said closing my laptop, ‘It seems that we are all now on a break. I’ll make some coffee’.
I stood up and went to switch on the kettle and turned on the radio. Fleetwood Mac singing Don’t Stop thinking about tomorrow’ cheerily breezed across the kitchen. The music was suddenly drowned out by scream. ‘That’s my pencil!’ shouted Bizzie.
No, it isn’t. Yours is the green one!’ yelled Toolie
And that one’s mine’ protested Bizzie.
Evvie and I looked at each other. ‘Don’t stop thinking about tomorrow/
Don’t stop, it’ll soon be here,’ We sang together.
Daaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaad!

Steve Brainbridge

European vocational education and training policy
analyst at Cedefop (the European Centre of the
Development for Vocational Training).

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