Learning On-Line #4
5th former Morgan Pearson’s Highs and Lows of On-Line Learning
Morgan Pearson (5th form)
- I have found that online learning has taught me the value of time management and self-control far more than any LO lesson ever did. This are obviously very valuable skills that we have all been forced to quickly pick up on.
- I enjoyed being able to work at my own pace, especially in subjects such as maths and physics. I was not slowed down by my peers as I often am in class.
- I appreciated the amount of resources we were given access to. This was very useful. If ever I felt unsure of something, I could easily re-watch any lesson videos, or re-examine the notes my teachers had prepared, until I was sure of what I was doing.
- I have quite severe ADHD, and I began to really appreciate the lack of distractions that working from home created. Often classmates can prove to be great distractions. I was able to progress much further in subjects like maths than I did during normal class, as I didn’t have my friends to distract and be distracted by.
- Getting used to the system of online learning was very difficult at first, and I often fell behind in work because of this.
- The volume of work we were issued was, in most cases, far more than we would be expected to do in normal school. This put me under immense pressure to complete all the work that continued to pile up before me. This stress was not good, and only after making some changes was I able to overcome it.
- Even once the system changed, I worked for more than 7 hours a day, only finishing my work once the sun had set.
- It was often very difficult to grasp concepts without that human connection that in person teachers provide.
- If I failed to follow a strict schedule one day, which was an easy mistake to make, getting back on track with the work was incredibly difficult.
- At the time I did not have much Wi-Fi. This always proved to be a great hindrance, as half the time I would have to persuade my parents to buy me data to access my work.
What Worked Best …
At the beginning, finding a decent plan to manage my work seemed improbable. In an attempt to get into a good position workwise, I often side-lined what I decided were the “less important” subjects to give me time to pay more attention the more important ones. I set aside subjects like English, Afrikaans, and LO in an attempt to keep up with Maths, Physics, Accounting, and EGD. Over the weekends I would crunch down on those subjects that I had ignored, which left me with very little free time to relax and unwind. I could have definitely managed my work more effectively, and I started on that path after making some changes. I found waking early in the morning and starting my working day a couple hours earlier than usual exponentially increased how much work I was able to get done. I would take a short break over noon to do something relaxing, such as playing guitar, before setting back to work for the rest of the afternoon. I would eat lunch whilst working. Although this made my days feel much longer and more tiring, it helped me to better manage my time.
Suggestions for my peers…
My suggestion to my peers is that they get earlier nights and opt for earlier mornings, as this helps you to be much more productive. I would also suggest that, contrary to what the teachers might say, they should focus on maths and their selected subjects before paying any attention to subjects like English, Afrikaans or isiZulu, or LO, as most of the work we do in these subjects, save literature, is repetition of things we’ve learnt every year since 2nd form. I would also recommend that, if ever they feel overwhelmed by the volume of work they have been allocated, they must take a step back. Just chill for an hour or so, and then analyse what they actually have to get done. In doing so, they can rule out the stuff that might not hold as much weight, and pay more attention to important subjects. This helped me to stay calm in times of dismay.