E-Learning

Hafsa Ibrahim, Writer

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 E-Learning is a SACS procedure aimed at ending school and starting summer break at the same time each year. Rather than lengthening the school year, students can effectively log on to a computer and attend classes in a virtual learning session. However, I question the effectiveness of staying at home and completing assignments.
        Learning at home has become an arduous task. The anxiety of having to turn in several different things by midnight is not my idea of what a snow day should be.
        After the painstakingly long four days of polar vortex weather, most students were in agreement that e-Learning took a great toll on their mental well-being and overall happiness.
      “It was definitely not a fun and fresh time,” Gabie Querry (10) said.
     Although e-Learning prevents the halt of curriculum during bad weather, is there any actual learning that takes place? In the absence of teachers, students are forced to independently work on their assigned tasks without guidance or help.
      If, in fact, a student runs into a problem, an email must be sent to the particular instructor regarding the issue. When teachers don’t promptly reply, it can be challenging for students to complete their assigned work. This undoubtedly adds to the stress on e-Learning days.
      On top of that, what can be especially inconvenient is when teachers expect students to learn and understand new concepts through, for example, a video or a powerpoint, and then give a test or quiz over the specific concept the following day without any clarification or practice with the material.
      Being in a classroom is invaluable to maximize the learning experience. The silence and lack of disturbance students receive at school is crucial to fully retain and process information. At home, it can be extremely difficult to concentrate because of noisy siblings or friends who came over to spend the e-Learning day together.
       Ideally, teachers are supposed to make up for lost class time by giving work that would and could have been done within the class period. When teachers unintentionally assign tasks that take longer than 45 minutes, which is not uncommon, it can be frustrating for students who have difficulty finishing things quickly, and can even lead to working late into the night. As a student myself, I cannot recount a time when I was able to finish e-Learning within a 7-hour time frame.
         Additionally, it can be difficult for teachers to teach new material on cancellation days, and busy work becomes an alternative to learning.
          “I feel like you can get a lot of work done but you might not be learning [as much],” Emily McLaughlin (11) said.
        In truth, e-Learning does not feel like a day of productivity or actual education. Rather, it feels like a mad rush to finish assignments before a deadline. There usually isn’t enough time to go through each assignment carefully and meticulously, so the work is often carelessly and quickly sped through.
          It is nice to avoid the subtraction of days from summer vacation and the stress of making up for lost class time. However, I would much rather enjoy the freedom of having no school and no work, and let a snow day be a snow day.
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