Online vs. In Person Learning


Kierston Robicheaux and Carly Earnest

Mrs. Tori Boyers, a math teacher, checks on her E- learners before beginning her daily lesson plans.

Many Champion students are attending school online due to the pandemic, or students can go in person, having the option, following COVID-19 restrictions and guidelines this 2020-2021 school year.
Due to the changed learning environments, some teachers are seeing performance differences between distance and in-person learners.
“I would say for my on-level classes, they tend to perform lower for my E-learners,” said Biology teacher Dr. Valerie Holcomb. “For my AP classes, the students that are there every day with their cameras on and asking questions, they perform just as well as my in-person students. Now, if they keep their cameras off and don’t ask questions, then they do tend to perform lower as E-learners.”
Some students struggle because of the distractions that at-home learning has.
“Since I was on the computer the entire day, it was easy to get sucked in to watching YouTube and stuff in-between classes or during class,” said freshman Autumn Stevens, who previously attended school online but is now at school in person. “Also, having my family moving around and doing stuff in the background was definitely distracting too.”
Teachers have to adjust the way they assign work to make it more available to online students.
“I think the most challenging thing is having to create digital assignments. Once we have them, it is kind of nice that everyone can do the digital work because it does make grading quicker,” said Dr. Holcomb. “But another problem is that we all don’t have Chromebooks, so we can’t implement digital work to every single student, even our in-person students.”
COVID-19 has caused many students to adapt their learning styles.
“I believe I can learn through either way, as long as the teacher is near the computer so we can hear them clearly,” said freshman Natalie McLane, who started the school year online learning and has since switched to be on campus.
Some teachers’ learning styles have not been affected by COVID-19.
“Because I teach biology, we still have to do labs and a lot of hands-on activities,” said Dr. Holcomb. “ I just try to promote hand washing and using hand sanitizer, but all in all, I think everyone is doing a great job and I haven’t had to change too many things, other than masks and hand washing.”
Although these new changes can challenge students, some students have seen their grades improve.
“My grades are a lot better actually,” said junior Amelia Routhier, who started the year in person, but switched to learning online partway through the first semester. “Since I don’t really have to travel between classes and my teachers usually let the online kids out early, I have more time to finish stuff before the school day ends.”
While some students’ grades were unaffected, many prefer one experience over the other.
“My grades haven’t changed that much,” said Stevens, yet she conceded, “I’m definitely able to learn a lot more in person because I can ask the teacher questions and hear a lot better.”
As tests, quizzes, and school work continue, students continue to form their own opinions on which environment they prefer. “I can certainly see how it’s not for everyone but I really like it. I’m not big on socializing so it’s nice to be able to keep to myself the whole day to use my own setup at home,” said Amelia Routhier.

Which do you prefer?


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