May 15 2020
Throughout a majority of this time adjusting to changes taking place including the change of most people having to stay in their homes and schools moving to online instruction, students have mostly seen a reduced workload to account for the large amount of changes. This reduction in instruction does not necessarily mean that there is a reduction in learning or mental growth. During this time of isolation, students do not have to leave their homes to complete schoolwork and also have more time to do other things as they are no longer on school premises for a defined amount of time. Some students (like myself) may be using their time to further some skills or hobbies like musical or athletic skills or anything they are passionate about, or may be using their time to further develop some skills they may need in their future.
While developing skills students have interest in may seem very beneficial to people, but it doesn’t come without drawbacks. Students and families are having to stay at home for a majority of the time and that majorly cuts away at social interaction with others. Even though we have the benefit of being able to use technologies like instant messaging and live video calls, it still is not the same as being face to face and may negatively impact people mentally and emotionally as there is less interaction. This reduction in interaction may also effect learning in the fact there is less collaboration too where people are able to bounce ideas off of each other when they are with them, which is one thing i am seeing myself since we don’t have actual class time for our Tech and Entrepreneurship class. Other elective classes like art, band, construction tech, and ag are also seeing struggles as they are primarily hands on classes that are hard to learn individually without the classroom environment that has the materials provided and the people to collaborate with.
Some students may not be involved in or interested in any classes of these types and may have their own outlets or interests they develop on their own time outside of school, so trying to find a definite answer to whether online instruction is beneficial or detrimental to students very much depends on an individual basis.