Decisions, Decisions! Virtual vs. In-person Learning


Photo by Ralston Smith on Unsplash

As of April 12, 2021, students were given the choice of whether or not they would like to return back to WSIS. You were to fill out a form on whether or not your child was going to stay virtual for the rest or 4th quarter (and the rest of the year) or if she/he was going to attend in-person school 2 out of 5 days a week. Then, if you decided to come into the classroom, you received a letter in the mail explaining the Cohort you are in. If you got Cohort A, you attended school on Monday and Tuesday. The students assigned as Cohort B were to attend classes on Thursday and Friday. Everyone stayed virtual on Wednesday. The question still remains for many people: which is more effective- virtual schooling or in-person learning?

For many of us, virtual schooling has become second nature, for we have been doing it for over a year. Many students have submitted assignments or typed essays on their laptops, but there has never been anything like this! During online classes, you can work at your own pace, whereas in school you may be finished before the whole class or vice versa. Additionally, you can go on a zoom call with your teacher at the marked time if you have any questions or comments on the work presented that day. On the other hand, there is little structure during the virtual class. Kids tend to stay more focused when they are working in a classroom, whereas they get easily distracted at their home. In addition, sitting on a computer can cause headaches and eye problems and the synchronous schedule conducts a total of 6 hours on a computer every day! Finally, there is no social interaction through a computer. Although school is about learning and not all about making friends, students tend to learn better when they are in the classroom with others, and they don’t get bored as easily.

Is hybrid any better, though? Many people may contemplate wearing a mask for 6 hours. Not only may it get hard to breathe, but it can also make your ears sore from hooking around them for so long. Another concern may be about the lunch period. Are you going to get to sit by your friends? If you have to sit alone, is it really that bad for 30 minutes? Last but not least, the virus. Even though West Scranton Intermediate is taking all of the precautions, it may still be scary for some people to come back. On the contrary, the hybrid schedule can help you focus more and take in the information. Plus, it will be good to see your friends and teachers, and even just being in the building after being out for a year. The school day may go by quicker when you’re focused and actively participating in your work. Since you are in the room with your teachers, they can give you a hand on the work you need help with, and you may even understand the assignment more now that you are seeing it presented in person!

Everyone has his/her own opinion, but what do you think? Which do you prefer? Which option is more effective? Enjoy the rest of your school year, and always remember, WEST IS BEST!