COVID-19 and H2 biology tuition updates [17/9]
Because of constant new developments of COVID-19, this can affect BYang’s H2 Biology tuition classes. As such I would like to point my students here so that they get a week by week update for the how we will conduct our classes.
Outside of H2 Biology tuition classes: personal hygiene
If you like to read more about COVID-19 basics from me, let me point you there instead.
In this article, I am going to offer straight to the point best practices for you to reduce your chances of getting the infection.
Firstly, practice personal hygiene especially hand washing.
If you are want to know more about the details of why it is effective, you can watch the YouTube video here.
Why do it? Because this greatly reduces the viruses in your hands that you may carry as you go about your business in the day.
And more importantly we humans can’t seem to keep our hands off our faces.
So if we touch our faces with dirty hands that have the novel coronavirus, this ends up directly introducing them to the respiratory tract where they start their infection.
Secondly, in between hand washing if you have hand sanitizers use them!
Not all of them are equal in efficacy to killing viruses. Those that have the alcohols in them are more effective. Especially if they also contain in addition some organic acids.
Finally, you can also use surface disinfectants to clean surfaces that you frequently come into contact with.
I often use hydrogen peroxide.
Outside of H2 Biology tuition classes: using masks
When you do have to leave your house to carry out essential activities, wearing a mask will add a barrier against the novel coronavirus.
This is especially important in light of the community spread that is occurring.
You can watch this video in order to familiarize with the proper way to wear masks.
I do get questions about which masks are the most protective.
Having one on, is better than nothing no matter what type it is. If you have the luxury of choice an N95 mask will definitely outrank the normal surgical mask.
With an N95 mask, get one with a breathing valve if your are healthy. Although not crucial, this allows a 1 way expulsion of air that we breathe out.
Since this type of air is frequently moist, it causes the mask to become wet over time.
And if that occurs, the efficacy of the masks can reduce which is why those with breathing valves can lengthen the lifespan of the masks.
However, if you are already sick, then get one without the valves since this will protect someone else from your respiratory secretions.
Outside of H2 Biology tuition classes: social distancing
These days more and more governments are talking about flattening the curve.
In essence, this is to reduce the spread of COVID-19 as low/slow as possible.
The rational is after observing that in the population that gets the infection, a percentage of them will end up needing critical care.
This largely entails close monitoring of the respiratory function that is reduced because of the infection, the lost of which can lead to death.
This is very labor and equipment intensive and countries may not be able to supply both if the numbers of patients needing them massively increases.
If the hospitals reach capacity they may have to decide who will receive the care and who does not.
And those who don’t will DIE. Which is why countries are instituting tough measures so that the curve flattens rather than rise exponentially.
Social distancing: why do it?
Social distancing is the emphasis of a distance between you and the next person in public.
The reason for this is because viruses like the novel coronavirus can transmit via droplets within 1m.
The further away you are, the less likely sufficient live viruses can enter into your airways to cause the infection.
In doing so, you help the government to flatten the curve.
Some argue that in most cases younger people have mild to symptom-less infections.
That is indeed true. However, our loved ones, parents and grand-parents are likely in the high risk age groups.
And some of them may already have a pre-existing underlying illness.
If they were to get infected by you, the outcomes may be disastrous for them.
As I am writing about this, it is personal for me.
That is because my mother has been fortunate enough to survive a heart attack and a subsequent cardiac bypass surgery.
I really hope she will not accidentally pick up the infection from some young person with a nonchalant attitude towards this disease.
By practicing social distancing, you are helping the high risk individuals around you.
Social distancing and H2 Biology tuition
Since the H2 biology syllabus covers infectious diseases.
It is even more pertinent for BYang’s H2 Biology tuition to practice walk the talk.
Which is why from time to time, if the situation calls for it, classes will convert to e-learning so that we can do social distancing.
Because social distancing works!
This reduces the risk of spreading the infection and we contribute to flattening the curve as well.
Not only that but we also learn to be responsible about our own learning.
It also forces me to get creative with e-learning classes to increase engagement as well as understanding.
As such, this page will be your update point weekly as to the status of classes for the coming week so that you know whats next and plan ahead.
H2 Biology tuition: the problem with Zoom
Some parents, colleagues and students point me to tools like Zoom for e-learning.
I will not use it as there have been privacy concerns with the tool. In addition, reports like this about Zoom keeps happening. Also, increasingly organizations are banning the application. New York City Schools as well as Elon Musk’s companies as well as the Taiwan government are the latest to do so with the list growing longer by the day.
Unsurprisingly, MOE just now mandate all teachers to stop using Zoom for e-learning.
Finally, for those of you who use Zoom, there has been a hack with personal details stolen. Please check here to see if your personal details are one of them, also to change your passwords if you share your passwords across many accounts.
H2 Biology tuition: status update for the upcoming weekend of 19/20th September for J1
Now, everyone have to go back to school everyday despite the daily new infections.
According to the experience of South Korea, this can be tumultuous.
In addition, tuition is now able to resume.
However, since the classes are now fully subscribed, we will very quickly run afoul of the requirements of reopening.
Considering the safety of the graduating class in this especially important year, we will reopen physical classes likely closer to phase 3.
As such, please dedicate the usual time for tuition this weekend as an interactive session will happen within the Whatsapp group chat instead of the physical class.
Make sure during the session you have (1) access to your phone for the entire duration. (2) Ability to get good WiFi as audio needs to be sent and downloaded during the session. (3) That your phone has charge or you have access to charging during the period. Finally, (4) that you have a good 2+ hours without interruption during the session.
This will happen in conjunction with 1-1 consults where appointments can be made here to ensure everyone is on pace and ready to catch up. SEE YOU ONLINE!
In the meantime, here’s wishing that my students stay well and healthy as we weather through the infectious ordeal whilst attending BYang’s H2 Biology tuition.
- On March 19, 2020