Online Learning vs In Person Learning

Online Learning and In-Person Learning, though they serve the same purpose, are very different. Online learning isn’t new, and luckily the world is experiencing this shift to online learning in a time when we have the latest technology provided, and many students are familiar enough with computers that they can learn from home. Online learning is traditionally used with college and universities, which makes sense since many people who attend college and university have jobs and can’t attend physical school. However, for school aged children, physical school is much more beneficial. 

Both styles of school have their benefits and disadvantages, whether you’re a teacher or student. For students, Some students learn better in person with paper, and the teacher there physically to help them. Other students thrive in an environment where they are able to do the work when they want and submit it by the due date. For teachers, do they like their own teaching space with children physically present, or do they prefer teaching from a screen in the comfort of their homes? English teacher Rachel Waxman shared which platform she prefers,  “I definitely prefer in-person teaching. Not only is it easier, but it feels more purposeful. Part of the reason I became a teacher was because of the way my teachers were able to connect with me as a student. I feel like online teaching really takes away from that aspect of teaching. That being said, I don’t HATE online teaching.”

 “I think, if you look at the numbers, in-person teaching is much more beneficial to students across the board. Students are more likely to come to class and pay attention. They don’t have to rely on an internet connection or help younger siblings–they get to worry about themselves. In-person, students are able to develop a better relationship with their teachers, they feel more invested in class and are more likely to advocate for themselves (ask questions) and otherwise engage with the content being taught and, most importantly, they are able to interact with their peers. Students, I believe, look forward to making connections with their classmates and that’s simply just not as easy in a virtual environment.” 

She also gave insight on what Online teaching has been like for teachers. “ Online teaching has been one of the most stressful experiences of my life. Never have I worked so hard making sure content is understandable and accessible with, and without, my guidance. From what I’ve gathered, the same is true of my teacher colleagues. I think we should keep an element of virtual teaching when we return to in-person teaching though. Teachers, across the board, including myself, have seemed to really enjoy having time to check-in with students Wednesdays.” “ In-person teaching just seems to reach students in a different, more meaningful way. Another aspect of online learning I’ve noticed is that students are having a hard time managing the workload and holding themselves accountable. I think being in a physical classroom helps them enter a “school-mindset” and being stuck at home never allows them to enter a similar mindset to navigate the demands of virtual learning.”

Pros and Cons of each.  “  Pros of in-person teaching: Student/teacher connection, students will ask more questions, teachers can tell when students are struggling or need help or are just lazy, students get to make connections and interact with their peers, students are more engaged in lessons, students seem less distracted, teachers can help focus students.

Cons of in-person teaching: Commuting to work/school, students misbehave and get other students off track, fire drills… (that’s all I got for right now… I miss working in school)

Pros of online teaching: flexible schedules, no commuting, no paperwork, no student misbehaviors

Cons of online teaching: Insane workload, grading takes so much longer, internet connectivity issues, internet sites literally going offline, barely there engagement from students “ 

After interviewing some other students, they think online learning is better because it is  the safest option as of now. “With virtual learning during this pandemic, I feel it is difficult to keep up with my AP classes, dual enrollment classes and college applications”. They explained how the experience helped them to grow and develop skills such as time management, studying more efficiently, and persevering in the face of challenges. 

 Some other juniors think that during online learning they are able to focus 100% on themselves and they get the quietness they need and with them being with the teachers on the screen it makes them put their phone on silence and do their work or use the extra break giving them but in person, they don’t get that extra break so they have to wait after school for coach class which some of them can’t because of ride back home. One of the students I interviewed said, “ in person learning is much harder because they are limited to a certain amount of hours per class and whatever they teacher could schedule to teach and do work is what is going to be done for that amount of time and he don’t think it is the best option for students to stop what they are learning and counting  3 days later, it doesn’t help them keep up with what they are learning”.

I interviewed one other student, his name is Prince and he said he prefers in-person learning more than online because with the in-person learning you get to see what the teacher is actually doing like the illustration as well as they get to see what the teacher is writing but the in-person they just pull up the PowerPoint slides and they will be talking about it. Prince also said in-person learning “ I get to see what is actually happening and the examples, also asking people to do examples among themselves but when it comes to online learning the students don’t really pay attention in class”. Sometimes when the teacher asks questions they don’t talk and everyone will be silent which makes the person boring, and also gives people the advantage to cheat that’s why he preferred in-person than online.