Struggles of Adapting to Virtual Education

Irene Spano, Senior Editor

In the wake of the COVID-19 Pandemic, schools in Michigan, the U.S., and across the globe are temporarily closed, set to reopen which looks like it will be in the fall. In the meantime, brick and mortar schools have now become internet and electronic schools and for some students, this poses a problem. 

That problem being, how are students that have primarily had a face-to-face education expected to adapt to completely virtual education. 

Many students, myself included, thrive within the classroom, because they have: peers to discuss work, teachers to ask questions, a schedule to rely on, and a work-oriented environment with a limited amount of distractions. 

Though being surrounded by your peers has its downsides, it does provide assistance in the classroom for many students. Being able to bounce ideas off each other, peer edit, work in groups, etc.. Being surrounded by others is part of the learning process. It helps students with people skills. It provides education on how to deal with people you may not like, how to talk to new people, how to work together, and how to develop leadership skills. 

On a personal note, I need my peers to help me get work done. You can call that peer pressure, but that is what it is. Being in that work-oriented environment forces me to do work because everyone else is. Nobody wants to be the one kid slacking. 

Self-motivated or lack thereof ties into the problems of online learning as well. As already stated, not everyone can just go do their work all by their own motivation. Honestly, I am amazed by people that can self motivate like that, because I can not. So many other students struggle to self motivate and rely on being in the classroom as our motivation. 

A silver lining to our temporary new education system is that it gave us students a new sense of appreciation. Senior, Aileen Scalzo says, “It’s been different, but it makes me appreciate being in school a lot more.” 

I think most people would agree with Scalzo because we did not realize how great being in the classroom was. Sure there were days that we complained about having to be at school, but now every day students are complaining about having school online. 

So many students are now forced to adapt seemingly overnight to a whole new way of learning and it’s scary. They are worried about their grades if their work will even count, will they graduate on time, and so many other questions. While we understand that this is an unprecedented time, it does not feel like anyone is leading us to a solution.