The unpopular benefits of distance learning


Since the start of the school closures, students all over California have had to deal with the implementation of remote learning. Although there have been struggles, there are a variety of benefits that come as a result which may have been overlooked. 

Many students might say that distance learning is a bad way of learning. However, this is misguided because Distance Learning transfers more responsibility onto the student, rather than the teacher. Distance Learning can actually be a good thing, if students change their perspective and take responsibility for their learning they might pick up a few life lessons along the way.

From the beginning, many students despised distance learning. From its dull nature, long videos, and fast pacing, many students lost interest in school. Going from a social and interactive learning environment to staring at a screen for multiple hours at a time, many students had to resentfully adapt. In the midst of a pandemic, not much could be done to change the situation.

Many high school teachers assign their students a large amount of assignments in the course of a certain number of days. High school students are used to one of two assignments a night, from each subject, and the amount of work varies day to day. Students struggle to complete these assignments due to a lack of a crucial skill, time management. 

Doing a large amount of assignments in one sitting is frustrating, tedious, and unhealthy. Dr. Charlotte Gore, a pediatric ophthalmologist at the Gavin Herbert Eye Institute, states that prolonged exposure to screens leads to “general eye strain and fatigue…and, often, headaches.” These effects are not ideal for a student attempting to complete homework. A simple and effective solution is to take small breaks in-between, to let the eyes and the brain relax. 

Another solution to complete large amounts of assignments in the course of a certain number of days is to divide the workload bit by bit. If a student is given a week to complete five assignments, dividing the work to one assignment per day is the most practical. Not only does it reduce the time spent at a screen, but the quality of work would also improve since a student would not be spending hours doing multiple assignments in one sitting. 

High school students still have a big workload as many take AP or Honors classes. In a poll done by North Texas Daily, 64% of the 400 students surveyed reported to be more stressed this 2020-2021 school year then before. The most effective ways to relieve stress are to take breaks, meditate, or exercise. 

64% of the 400 students surveyed reported to be more stressed this 2020-2021 school year then before.

As a student myself,  I decided to shift my perspective and make the best of the situation. I believe Buena students have an unbelievable opportunity to relieve themselves of stress because distance learning is quite flexible. Required classes at Buena only go from 8 am-11:45 am. School days now are three to four hours less than a normal, in-person school day. If stressed, students should take advantage of their new class schedule and spend time exercising, or meditating to combat stress. Learning to schedule and make time for important activities to relieve stress is a great way to learn to manage time.

Time management is considered by many big corporations to be the key to success. Many successful adults also consider time management to be crucial in the “real world.” If a student can master this skill while still in high school, they would have a promising future ahead of them. Many students dislike distance learning because it’s different than the standard way of learning. Since learning has changed, students should also change their way of learning for the better, taking responsibility for it and using this time to grow as a student.

High school students are going through a unique experience this year, with learning being more flexible than ever. Students get to learn online in the comfort of their own home. Distance learning to some degree is not going anywhere, So instead of viewing distance learning as a burden, embrace it.  Use this strange time in history as a tool to develop fundamental skills that will go a long way.