Halloween During COVID

This Halloween will be the first in modern history to be celebrated during a pandemic.

How does one stay safe during Tock or Treating?

First, practice social distancing. You don’t know about others.

Second, wear a cloth mask under your costume. This will protect you and others.

Third, watch out for any homemade treats. You don’t know someone’s process of making them.

Fourth, when you return home examine your treats carefully. Anything not in the original wrapper or a split wrapper discard it immediately. You don’t know why the wrapper is torn or not the way it should be. Anything could have happened and it is better to be safe.

The main point of Halloween is to have fun and enjoy yourself.

It is sad, that during this during Halloween 2020 we must be super vigilant to protect ourselves and our family because not everyone is doing the same across the country.

Hopefully, we don’t have any new COVID outbreaks this year’s Halloween.

As you go Trick or Treating be careful and enjoy your time out.

Please follow safety guidelines from doctors and scientists, not what is online or not scientific sources.

Robert Medak

Freelance Writer, Blogger, Copy Editor, and Reviewer

Shifting to Online or Virtual Classes

Every day there are new cases of the Coronavirus in schools around the country as there are more cases and deaths reported from the general public since many are not following the recommendations of the scientist and epidemiologists studying and trying to find a vaccine that works and is safe for the people around the world and America.

Listening to the people in charge who are studying this virus, the virus could become endemic (recurring like the normal flu that kills people every year) until then we could be in mask mode until the third or fourth quarter of 2021.

To keep the spread of the virus we must maintain the recommendations of the doctors that say we should wear masks, social distance, and wash our hands frequently.

The cases that test positive in schools are from outside the schools in places where people gather like churches, parties, bars, and restaurants so we must all be careful who we are around and make sure we protect ourselves and others as much as possible to eliminate the exposure to this virus to ourselves and our families.

Until we have a national plan, for the long-haul each of us is responsible for the spread of this virus. There may be a vaccine this found to work and is safe in 2021 but there are some hurdles that must be overcome first. The main one is the safety of the vaccine in humans.

There must be strict guidelines for testing the safety of any vaccine. We can only do this with enoughtest subjects and waiting for the results to determine any possible side effects just like all medications that people need to be prescribed for conditions of the heart, asthma, diabetes …etc.

Until then, it is up to each of us to do our part to try and contain this virus and help stop it from spreading further than it already has.

Many schools in Mercer County, West Virginia have moved to virtual classes because of the new reported positive virus test while there is are increases in positive tests for the virus in 31 states in the United States.

Take care and stay safe while following the safety protocols.

Robert Medak

Freelance Writer, Blogger, Copy Editor, Proofreader, and Reviewer

Is Online Learning here to Stay?

With new cases of infection with the corona virus daily, online classes have been stretched out longer than anyone thought when they decided to open America back up.

New York for example has had a spike in new cases in certain neighborhoods causing schools to be kept closed for now.

Almost daily we hear about another school or athletic program where someone has tested positive for the virus.

Possible vacinnes are still in stage three testing and we will have to wait for the results to become final as to any side effects before we can start inoculating individuals that will probably take sometime in 2021 before we know which one is effective in treating this virus regardless of what the current president says per epidemiologists and scientists that have spent a lifetime studying infectious diseases.

Social media and talking heads are not the ones with the answers or who we should be listening to but those that are working and studying this virus for months and other infectious diseases.

With the temperatures getting colder with the coming winter people will be spending more time indoors and possibly in groups that can spread the virus exponentially.

As this continues, the maks, social distancing, and washing your hands often protocols will continue for months to come.

It is up to individuals to protect their safety and the safety of others while still attending classes even it that means that classes will be online for the foreseeable future.

Online classes offer a safe environment to learn and for parents to help their children with their homework.

Until such time that we can have complete safety for all in the classrooms and school individuals need to do what is best for them to protect themselves from any illness. This will probably be online classes for months to come.

Make the best of this difficult time and stay safe for the virus.

Robert Medak

Freelance Writer, Blogger, Copy Editor, Proofreader, and Reviewer

Some People Excel At ONLINE LEARNING And Some Don’t – Which One Are You?

Online learning is what you make it.

It can be a good experience or a bad one depending on your attitude.

If you think it will be difficult, it will be for you, but if you think of it as something new and exciting, it will be.

While doing the work with your teacher online, think of it as an opportunity to do some searching to enhance what the teacher brings up in the day’s lesson.

You can learn about searching for subjects online which will you well beyond the classroom.

You have a golden opportunity to learn more about the subjects in the day’s lesson after our classes are over for the day.

You also have the opportunity to learn about any subject that interests you an learn what you can find online that might be something not taught in class.

Many libraries have eBooks that you can borrow and read online if you have a library card. Check with your local library to see what they have to offer online.

It is really up to you what you make online learning. You may not have immediate teacher response to your questions but you could search for answers online and earn something new in the process. Does that sound like it might be fun?

With more and more schools and neighborhoods spiking in new infections, online learning may be with us for some time to come. Students will just have to make the best of a horrible situation because of the pandemic.

For those students considering college, many colleges and universities offer online courses to fit the schedule of people who work. Think of this time of online classes as practice for the future.

See? Online classes are what you make it, good, bad, or ugly it all depends on the student and how they look at it.

There are some benefits to online education.

First, safety because you don’t have to risk catching the virus.

Second, you can have reference sources close to you.

Third, you can take breaks and have food or something to drink close at hand.

Forth, your family could be close or a pet could keep you company while you work on your lessons.

Fifth, if you have a problem with a lesson, maybe there is a parent or older sibling that can help you with the answer.

When your day is over school wise, you could talk to your friends and see how they are doing with their lessons if you are in the same class. Maybe compare any notes you each have.

Online classes don’t require you to dress a particular way but to be there mentally and learn.

Enjoy learning while you can any way you can.

Robert Medak

Freelance Writer, Blogger, Copy Editor, Proofreader, and Reviewer

Education During a Pandemic

It seems like almost daily there are reports about new positive tests ofeither students or staff of a school somewhere in America.

Teachers are having to learn new ways of teaching and are questioning how to deal without human interaction with their students, while the students are having to learn how to deal with online instruction and how to ask a question of the teacher.

If online learning wasn’t difficult enough, we have people hacking online training to disrupt it. The FBI found one teenager in Florida ding this and he was arrested.

No one has experienced the times that we are going through in the history of the United States.

America and the world are still in the first spike of the pandemic and the normal flu season is coming this fall. We haven’t seen a second spike if there is one to come.

No one knows if or when the deaths from the Coronavirus pandemic will start trending down and the pandemic will b over.

Can people trust a vaccine if and when one comes out?

When will it come out and how safe will it be?

Will people opt to take a vaccine when it is available and how many people can be vaccinated?

Will there be enough vaccine for everyone in America?

The administration and scientists differ on when there will be enough vaccine for everyone.

This pandemic will be with us for months to come if not years.

No one knows when we will be able to go back to in-class instruction will be back to the pre-pandemic levels.

Unfortunately, only time will tell when things get back to some semblance of normal but our lives will never be like the pre-pandemic times.

There will be a new normal for generations to come until like the generations from over one hundred years ago and history is forgotten only to repeat itself sometime in the future because we fail to learn from the past and prepare for it.

There was a pandemic in 1918, we should have been prepared for the 2020 pandemic but many people thought, why should we learn history because it has passed.

Guess what? History does repeat itself.

We should learn from history so that we don’t make the same mistakes that previous generations did.

We may be using online learning for the future until we can guarantee complete safety for both staff and students in our schools throughout the country before we send children into the classrooms.

It is up to individuals to care for their safety and the safety of others.

Robert Medak

Freelance Writer, Blogger, Copy Editor, Proofreader, and Reviewer

CIVICS: Do You Need It?

What is Civics?

Civics is the study of the duties and rights of citizenship. In simplistic terms, it is about the way a government works and the obligations of citizenship within a country.

One such duty is for all citizens to know how a government works and the duties of the people elected to represent us within local, state, and federal government to be held to perform as the servant of the citizens and not party ideology.

Political parties differ in ideology but they should be held to the standard of what is best for the majority of the population not special interests because of the money given to a particular party.

Only nine states and the District of Columbia require at least one year of U.S. Government or civics in high school but are light on civic engagement skills.

Is this the dumbing down of America so that the population can be controlled by the government?

Anyone living in America should be versed in civics along with their duty to the government and the proper checks and balnces listed in the U.S. Constitution that all people holding office swear an oath to protect and defend against all enemies both foreign and domestic just like everyone in the military.

Many years ago, schools taught civics or government but not as much today. If schools don’t civics, it is up to us to read and learn what is supposed to be the way government works and if someone holding office does not follow the rules they should be removed by our votes and replaced with someone who will do their job according to the constitution.

Parts of the Administration are supposed to be non-partisan, non-biased, and follow the rule of law and order. Like the Department of Justice (DOJ), the FBI under the DOJ, the Treasury, Center for Disease Controls (CDC), the Pentagon, and others.

As the Constitution begins, “We The People…”, the representatives that are elected work for us, not their party or the President. We the people need to hold them accountable with our votes. For many years, the rich have been controlling our representatives, which is why wages have been stagnant for decades the poorer you are the more you pay in taxes while the rich and big corporations are not paying their fair share and sending jobs overseas to pay less for labor than in America.

If this trend continues where will jobs for future graduates be found? The current pandemic has exacerbated unemployment causing homelessness and disillusionment among many people.

America is the only major industrialized country that does not help its working class with some form of assistance while many other countries offer a basic income for its population. There are many people wondering if there will be jobs with a living wage post-pandemic. In America today someone working for minimum wage cannot afford a single bedroom apartment in most cities in all fifty states.

Until we learn civics and about what the Constitution says, this ill continue because we are not holding our political representatives accountable to perform their duties for the country and its population.

Yes, we need civics!

Robert Medak

Freelance Writer, Blogger, Copy Editor, Proofreader, and Reviewer

Having an Animal is a Lifetime Commitment

If you take on the decision to bring an animal into the home, that commitment is for the lifetime of the animal and arrangements must be made for the animal if someone passes before the animal, like another family member or be rehomed to a loving home rather than dumped in a shelter.

Animals are living beings with emotions and require their needs met. They may not understand that someone will no longer be there and will not do well in a shelter. They may become fearful, depressed, be passed by for adoption. They are withdrawn because they miss the person they lived with for a time and not a good candidate for adoption by the way they act.

Animals require not only food and water but exercise, socialization, emotional, and mental stimulation. An animal is not a toy that you play with for a while and then discard when you get tired of it.

If you are not ready to make this lifetime commitment, you probably should not get one.

If you want an animal in your life, think hard and long how much you are willing to give to the animal in time and effort to make the animal’s life a full and happy one before getting one.

If you choose a cat or dog, please consider neutering or spaying, which is good for their health and well-being plus help the over-population of unwanted animals.

Robert Medak

Freelance Writer, Blogger, Copy Editor, Proofreader, and Reviewer

Is Your School Ready for Students?

As students return to school in many cities across America, new cases of the COVID virus

are increasing among younger students. Many are asymptomatic but are testing positive for the virus, and asked to isolate before returning but is that enough? Is the school’s ventilation system capable of holding down the spread of the virus and are surface being disinfected after every use?

How often are the staff tested?

Is social distancing being observed?

What is your school’s policy regarding virus protection for students and staff?

How often are the administration offices sanitized?

Students don’t live in one classroom, are the rooms sanitized between classes?

What about the cafeteria and the tables along with anything that students may touch?

Does the school require masks?

What about the restrooms?

There are som many things that student’s families must think about and the school board also.

Just recently because of an increase of COVID cases a county in West Virginia has mandated all schools be online only for the entire county. Hope this isn’t the same for other states and counties in America but it could happen without proper precautions from all involved in attending school in person.

No one can tell how long this pandemic will last so we all have to protect ourselves and others.

Asymptomatic people are testing positive for the virus and are capable of being spreaders to others. A child could go to school and be around a spreader and then bring it home to siblings and the rest of the family. Everyone must maintain their health and if they are not feeling well to stay home.

Some students are opting for online instruction that brings its problems like hackers, the requirements, the equipment, and self-motivation. Learning online is not the same as having live interaction with the teacher when in the classroom. Working online takes time to get used to and requires students to work harder than when in the classroom to take notes or see examples on an overhead projector.

As online classes become more userfriendly this may change for both the teacher and student because it takes time to work out any problems that may arise when not in the classroom.

When using online classes there should be a way to ask questions or get extra help from the teacher if needed by the student. An E-mail to the teacher might help or an interactive question and answer might be made available for students.

This new way of teaching might be with us for some time to come.

We are entering a new pandemic normal that will create a new post-pandemic normal that no one knows will look like.

We can only take life one day at a time and hope for the best.

Good luck with the new school year and stay safe.

Robert Medak

Freelance Writer, Blogger, Copy Editor, Proofreader, and Reviewer

Are You Back In School?

On September 9, 2020, some schools in West Virginia are not allowing students to attend in-class teaching and must use online teaching in some counties because of the virus.

Some universities have banned undergraduates from attending in-class instruction because of virus outbreaks because they did not follow safety regulations about having large parties off campus.

Everyday there are more positive cases and deaths throughout the country either from large parties, weddings, friends coming to your home that are asymptomatic.

These are extraordinary times and we are not at a point where there is any light at the end of the tunnel with this pandemic.

Cases among young children have been increasing and college age people.

For everyone to stay healthy during this time, everyone should practice personal hygiene and wear a mask when in large rooms and school rooms while social distancing whenever possible.

I you have a fever or don’t feel well stay home, don’t bring and illness from home to school. Don’t linger with friends and possibly bring something home with you to infect your family.

Times are not normal with an estimated 400,000 deaths by January 2021 if we don’t mask up and don’t take precautions for ourselves and others.

We must protect everyone including ourselves until there is a cure for this virus which has mutated and could be more dangerous now.

Online learning is difficult for many students and teachers but for some there is no alternative now with the pandemic continuing for the future.

As the doctors and scientists have earned more about this virus they have found long term medical problems in people that have recovered. Don’t be one of them.
For now we have to do what we must to control the spread of this virus to lower the death rate. It is the only way according to the CDC and the Surgeon General of the United States who are doctors and scientists working on a possible vaccine or a cure for those in hospitals trying to recover.

Robert Medak
Freelance Writer, Blogger, Copy Editor, Proofreader, and Reviewer

Cats or Dogs

Some people like cats others like dogs.

It doesn’t make a difference which you prefer some things remain the same when bring one home.

First, don’t choose by looks alone. Watch how the animal acts in the place you are looking, hopefully a shelter or rescue. If you choose a rescue, there is a likelihood the animal will be well care for. A shelter may or may not check the overall health of the animal. There was an instance where a cat from a shelter when checked out by a veterinarian is was found to be suffer from some feline health issues and was best to euthanize him. Fortunately, the shelter allowed the person o chooses another animal.

Before bringing any new animal into the home, please take him/her to a veterinarian for a health check.

Second, once you bring a new animal into the home, keep an eye on any other animals in the home to see if the new one and the existing ones get along, which may take some time to socialize and get accustomed o each other so have a space to separate them when you are not around for as long as it takes to trust them.

Third, don’t spend more time with the new animal than with the one already there to stop any possible jealousy or emotional distress of the other pet. This does happen.

Animals do need another animal for companionship and a playmate if it is possible.

Watch how or if the animal will play with toys. Some cats and dogs don’t play with toys but the ones that do may fight over the same toy.

Some cats don’t like cat treats. Some cats my try to eat dog food if you have a dog in the house. This can harm the cat just like a dog eating cat food can be harmful.

It his is your first cat, do not give it milk because milk is not good for cats.
Ask your veterinarian about what to feed the animal or do some research online or read a book from the library to learn about the care, feeding, and training of the animal be it a cat or dog.

A dog must be trained to go to the bathroom outdoors and a cat must know where the litter box is located, which must be cleaned on a regular basis.

Dogs need regular exercise so they need to be taken for a walk or have a fenced yard while a cat can be exercised indoors during playtime.

Animals require socialization, exercise, training, and are a lifetime commitment to their health and well-being. If you get a pet be responsible for the animal’s health and needs.

Please adopt do not buy and get all animals neutered to stop the over population of animals, which end up in shelters and many don’t ever get out.

Enjoy having an animal in your life.

Robert Medak
Freelance Writer, Blogger, Copy Editor, Proofreader, and Reviewer