What I Learned Being Both In-person And Virtual


Lela Zeilman, Sophomore

I have been given the unique opportunity to experience both in-person and virtual learning. I work at a daycare, parents come in and out, kids are all over us, and it’s not too hard for someone to get COVID-19. On October 22nd I went to school in-person as most did. But just two weeks later, I was back in virtual due to a possible COVID-19 exposure from my boss. I had to self-quarantine from November 6th to the 18th. Being in both I’ve learned so much from each of those learning experiences. 

Being virtual, I always struggled with paying attention to my classes. I’m sitting at my desk with my phone in hand or next to me, zoom on my Ipad and doing work on my Chromebook. Youtube isn’t blocked, or Pinterest. With all of these distractions, my grades dropped big time. However, in-person doesn’t have many distractions, I still have my phone but I know when to put it down and pay attention. All of my old distractions are at home and I am here to learn. 

Another big thing was while in virtual, it feels optional. There were times where I didn’t turn my homework in on time or even at all! It’s so hard to stay motivated when I don’t have a disappointed teacher in front of me, and the only people I have to impress are my parents. In-person, the work doesn’t feel optional, we have teachers there to make sure we get our work done. If I don’t do my homework that night, I come to school the next day to a disappointed teacher. 

Being virtual while a majority of students are in the classroom can be very difficult to deal with. Many times we would be on zoom in the front of the class facing the board while the teacher is in the back of the room teaching. Virtual students are often forgotten about. A side effect of that is not actually learning. There would be times when the teacher has their headset in and the virtual people can hear them but no one else. Students in person could ask questions and get their answers. Many of the virtual students have laggy wifi or loud backgrounds, and it’s hard to ask questions. 

Something I strive off of is social interaction, but being virtual there was no way to have social interaction besides the people in my house. Going back to school really was a blessing. I get to participate in extracurricular activities such as StuCo and see my friends face-to-face. 

When it’s all said and done, everyone is struggling with the changes to learning. The virtual people often forget about. The in-person have to adjust to sitting at their own islands and wearing uncomfortable masks for eight hours. Lastly, the teachers have to re-adjust their curriculums to fit both the in-person and virtual. They have to be able to involve everyone which can be a struggle.