English teacher Jordan Vogel posts announcements and assignments on his Google Classroom page. He tries to post items early so "students can manage their time/workload in whatever way is best for them."

Students, teachers weigh in on distance learning

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Following the announcement of school closure, teachers and students are under new procedures to continue educating students as a part of distance learning. Some teachers continue to use technology they already use in the classroom, such as Google Classroom, while some students feel that they are not getting the same amount of education.

English teacher Jordan Vogel said that he is using technology he already uses in his classroom such as Google Classroom, but teaching online is still a big shift because of obstacles in communication.

“I miss the day-to-day interaction and conversations with students, because even when I ask a question or a student comments on a post, the dialogue might happen over several days throughout the week, not a typical conversation that goes back and forth over a few minutes,” Vogel said. “Despite those challenges, I have found that most of my classes have been very productive and I hope communication has been effective.”

Freshman Gordon Lin said that he does not think that he is receiving the same amount of education as in-class learning, because he feels that he is completing his homework without fully absorbing the information.

“[Teachers are there] to teach but to put pressure on students with deadlines [or] due dates so they feel that they have an incentive to truly learn,” Lin said. “For my biology notes I feel as if I’m just reading the textbook and writing things down, but I never absorb the information while I work. If the teacher started to give out tests on those notes, then students would truly do their homework to their best ability.”

When asked about his first impressions of distance learning, sophomore Brian Tran said that it “[felt] weird” because of the different speed and amount of work.

“The pace of learning has slowed down and homework is a little more overwhelming,” Tran said. “I felt like I was going to drown in assignments but after a few more days I got used to it.”

Spanish teacher Sonia Schecter said the cons of distance learning outweigh the pros because she misses being in the classroom and interacting with her students. Another negative she mentioned was that some students may need the help and direction of a teacher.

“I worry about the students who need extra support or don’t have the discipline necessary to learn the concepts left in the semester in order to be prepared for next year,” Schecter said. “I hope students have the wisdom to realize that it is up to them to take charge of their education from home.”

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