Students navigate campus return after year-long at home learning


Ava Okun

Finally in person, Buena students walk during their passing period, from fifth to sixth period class on Oct. 15.

March 13, 2020 the entire world shut down, a year and a half later all students returned back to campus full time, but with a different perspective. Things are turning back to normal, however feelings from the pandemic still linger.

Learning went from an in person setting, to sitting behind a computer screen for hours at a time. From being able to engage whenever you wanted, to have to click the “unmute” button to talk, things changed. As students stepped back onto campus for the first time, they had to adapt back to in person school, which for some brought excitement. 

“I’m so glad to be back in person, I feel like I learn so much better when I can actually interact with people in the classroom and be hands on,” senior Mariah Diaz-Morales said. 

Although online school wasn’t the ideal situation, it did have its perks. 

“I really liked not having to get ready for school everyday, I could just sit in bed and listen to my teacher talk,” Diaz-Morales said.

Even though sitting around in your pajamas all day may sound fun for some,  Diaz-Morales said overall that distance learning was not for her. It was difficult to “engage” and “have personal relationships” with the teachers since they seemed so far away. However, as the school year continues on, she is super thrilled for what’s to come.

As many students have grown up going to school everyday, it should have been easy and normal coming back to campus. After the pandemic it was hard for students to get back into the swing of things. 

I feel like the toughest thing for me was getting used to writing on pencil and paper again.

— Shai Daniels

Although transitioning back can be hard at times, some students gained a new appreciation for school in general after the pandemic. 

“I think before this whole thing happened, I really took school for granted,” junior Avery Trask said.

Trask admits that now she is more excited to come to school than years prior, since she knows what it is like to not be able to. And while she is happy to be back, she is still figuring out how to manage the workload. Trask feels that online school was much easier because she had more spare time with only three periods a day. 

 “Teachers are definitely giving a lot more work now that we are back full time. It was hard at first trying to figure out how I would get everything done on time,”  Trask said.

For Freshman, not only did they have to have their last year of middle school online but they also had to deal with the new transition jitters.

“One of my uncles worked here in the past, so he showed me around before school and I got the hang of it pretty quick,” freshman Quetzali Sanchez said. “But walking onto campus for the first day, it felt so much bigger with all the people here,” Sanchez said.

Even with all these different feelings, undoubtedly some students can agree that there was a new found love and appreciation that developed over the course of the pandemic for school, making them look forward to a full year of in person learning.

“I’m super excited to be able to go to sports games and dances again, I feel like that is something that I really missed while being online,” Diaz-Morales said.