Online training: is it worth it? (column) | Local voices

Ninety-three percent of households with school-aged children reported using online resources or online schooling during the first stage of the pandemic, according to a US Census Bureau survey in the summer 2020. How did these families deal with the stress of schooling that arose outside of school? Is the sacrifice of relative ease that comes with learning in school worth protecting against the threat of COVID-19?

This is a delicate subject for many parents and students who differ in their views on which practices to keep, which to give up and which new ideas to use. According to psychological, academic, and social research involving students, teachers, and parents, the benefits of learning in school far outweigh the sacrifices that come with education via the Internet.

First, there is the issue of accessibility. For low-income families, online schooling requires technology and Internet access that can be difficult to reach. Additionally, for many people, resources can be difficult to understand and use, resulting in less effective education. This over-reliance on technology in education can make it difficult for low-income families to provide their children with the resources they need, which can lead to a shortening or alteration of the curriculum.

Also, some important learning techniques and skills may not be available or as simple when used online. Some courses require access to materials accessible in the school building, such as physical education, science labs, languages, and public speaking. These subjects are taught and learned more easily in person. Another reason that online education can be difficult is the amount of time management and focus required without supervision, the lack of which can result in less work completed and understood, and possibly lower grades.

The use of an instructor-led curriculum is important in face-to-face learning. In online environments, students often have the flexibility to choose their own pace and can fall behind if there is no one to hold them accountable. Another area where accountability is important is that of exams, tests and quizzes. With easy access to the internet and other methods of cheating, the loss of a supervisor can lead to devastating results.

Another thing to consider is the lasting impact of psychological stress and the lack of access to emotional support on a daily basis. Online learning can lead to long sets of dates and homework assignments leading to anxiety during the school day. Being in front of a camera can be confusing for some students for psychological reasons.

However, the main loss from being online is the lack of social interaction. During a typical school day, students can constantly interact and receive feedback from their peers. It is not always available online. Another psychological disadvantage is the constant use of a screen. Depleted stimulation of the brain of still developing students occurs on contact with a screen, unlike true stimulation of neural connections. Screens can produce more fatigue than normal, resulting in less than exemplary performance. Finally, screens release blue light that can lower melatonin levels which help regulate sleep.

Some may disagree and claim that the safety and protection against the current COVID-19 health crisis is worth all the downsides of online learning. But if face-to-face schooling is conducted safely, students can reap the benefits of face-to-face education.

However, mask warrants can be troubling. Colossians 3:20 says, “Children, obey your parents in everything, for it pleases the Lord. The Bible clearly gives the father and mother authority over their children. I believe parents should be able to make decisions for their children regarding masking and social distancing based on the doctrine of parental jurisdiction. Is the promised “extra” security of COVID-19 worth giving up our God-given rights?

There are many reasons to support learning in school at a time when safety protocols are widely debated, including extended accessibility, ease of learning, and avoiding the psychological effects resulting from learning in practice. line. As Americans and Christians, we must support this fundamental position on education so that the academic future of our country can remain bright.

Alexander Hussar is in 10th grade at Dayspring Christian Academy.

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