Extended Home Learning, commonly referred to as Office Hours, allows students to meet with teachers for more individualized support. Each session of office hours dedicates 40 minutes to a period, but with students rarely making an appearance, they go to waste. Students must take these opportunities to help recover from distance learning disadvantages.
Office hours can recover time that students lose as a result of each class only meeting twice a week. Despite the dramatic reduction in instructional time, learning cannot be compromised because what students learn now acts as the foundation for future classes which tend to be more challenging. Office hours play a critical role in curbing this learning deficit and keeping students from being set up for failure in the current class curriculum and future classes.
Attending office hours will help students understand the lesson while also being proactive and independent. Scientific studies convey that a vital component of learning is repetition and practice. Office hours provide that, so students who attend are able to recall the material better. By changing their explanation processes and adjusting to the students’ pace, teachers are also helping students learn to seek help on their own. When students attend office hours, they receive both academic achievement and valuable work-ethic traits.
Office hours provide students with privacy that class time does not. Students are often afraid to ask questions or even participate because of Zoom’s spotlight feature, where the speaker’s face or profile picture is enlarged on everyone’s screen. This fear impedes their progress in class, but office hours allow students to freely ask questions without concern. Without these fears, students are more receptive to the teacher’s answer, as they will not panic over everyone knowing that they asked a question.
Some students may find office hours unnecessary because they believe that the educational outcome will only be temporary. Also, students might suggest that club meetings or required attendance for other classes might be big disruptors. However, attending office hours will only benefit students’ education in the long run because of their frequent attendance. Teachers’ support ranges from reviewing the material to answering questions which dramatically elevates a students’ comprehension of the material.
Students must use office hours to their advantage as an opportunity to thrive academically and communicate privately. If unable to attend office hours, students can stay during the last 15 minutes of the period, as it is reserved for additional assistance.