Students and Teachers Adjust to Distance Learning

Extroverts struggle with Online Classes; Introverts Love it


Some students like distance learning more than others; the same hold true for teachers.

Carly Torres, News Editor

Distance learning has been an adjustment for Alta High Students as we begin our final quarter of the 2019-2020 school year. Some students feel that this change has been beneficial to them, while others are having a harder time getting used to this new reality.

“I personally don’t like school at the moment because for me, it’s hard to force myself to have a set time to work at things.”, Samantha Shiba explained, “It’s hard to manage yourself just because when you’re spending that much time at home it feels like vacation.”

Many Alta Hawks are finding it hard to have the motivation to get started and complete their work when it needs to be completed. This can be problematic because without motivation, assignments rarely get done. There are also distractions at home, like technology, siblings, and parents telling you to do chores or exercise. These distractions keep students from completing their daily work.

Louren Hodges stated, “I definitely miss the socialization, seeing my friends everyday, and asking teachers questions.”

Not seeing people face to face has taken a toll on many. Extroverts are finding it difficult to go without talking to people everyday. Introverts, on the other hand, may think that social distancing is great. The situation all depends on who you are talking to and how you look at it.

“I enjoy online school because it gives me more time to be able to do my work and I can sit on my bed and do my homework.”, Nick Smith continued, “It’s glorious.”

Online school allows students to be more in control of when they learn and how they learn. Hodges likes that she can learn and complete her work at her own pace without the pressure of a classroom environment. Distance learning also allows students to stay in their pajamas and even their beds, which is a bonus.

The opinions of online school range from great to awful, depending on whom you are talking to.

Online learning has obviously impacted students tremendously, but they aren’t the only stakeholder impacted by the school soft closure. Teachers also face huge challenges with developing curriculum, posting to Canvas, and staying on top of the hundreds of assignments every day. All interviewed said it has been a huge adjustment and they all want to be in the classroom with their students and miss having daily interaction.

Debate Coach Sydnie Schoepf said that most of what she does in the classroom is effective because if personal interactions. “Getting kids engaged when I can’t be there to explain and encourage them … that’s hard.”

On the side of frustration, engaging everyone is another big problem. It’s time consuming to check Canvas and make sure people are logging in and when they don’t log in and engage, it presents a whole set of problems. Some students have reasons for not doing work, but on the whole, those who don’t engage just don’t want to do the work. “I think the hardest thing is seeing kids working to fulfill expectations and then seeing so many others who aren’t doing their work,” said Ms. Camille Graff.

Teacher Denise Ferguson said online school has been an adjustment. She loves not waking up at 5:30 every morning, but she would go back to that in an instant now. “The most frustrating part of distance learning is communication and connecting with every students. “It’s difficult to reach everyone all the time,” she said. “Some students don’t read email, look at texts, and just want to stay unnoticed and ignoring communications is their way out of it. Communications naturally break down which has been frustrating.”

Mrs. Ferguson said she has started making personal phone calls to connect with students and encourage class participation.

Teachers go into teaching because they like to interact with others and they miss their students. “The hardest thing for me is lack of interaction with my students,” said Ms. Peggy Deveney. “Not having personal contact with them is hard.”

Several said they simply miss their students’ voices. And Mrs. Lantis especially misses saying, “Please put away your phones.”