Connected Learning Allows for More Opportunities to Disconnect

Connected learning is nice every once in a while but doing it in long stretches presents lots of challenges and brings along more work for students


Students who participated in a study done by the University of Colorado Boulder responded to the question “I feel like I’m doing better in school since the online switch because I am at home”.

Elle Simon, Features Editor


 Sitting in front of a computer screen displaying dark gray squares with names typed across them, dressed in comfy clothes is how we’ve all been learning this past week. It’s nice to deviate from the traditional classroom setting that is accompanied with purple polos and gray skirts, but long stretches of connected learning make me miss the classroom. Don’t get me wrong, I love getting to sleep in, get snacks whenever I want, and wearing sweatpants everyday, but the truth is connected learning isn’t my favorite thing and I would much rather be at school than sitting at my desk. 


Students who participated in a study done by the University of Colorado Boulder responded to the question “I feel like I’m doing better in school since the online switch because I am at home”.

Connected learning doesn’t hold my attention like sitting in a normal classroom does. Access to my phone all the time is my biggest distraction. Friends text about what’s going on in class, notifications from Snapchat, and emails constantly popping up in my inbox are a few of the many  things that draw me away from what my teacher is saying and into the digital world. While I do have self-control there’s just something about a banner popping up that entices me to grab my phone and see whatever else is going on in the world. My phone is how I connect with my friends and peers when we are all learning from our bedrooms. The social aspect of in person school is gone when I’m sitting at home; no lunch with my friends or making eye contact with each other during class. School is the main place where I get to see my friends since we’re busy teenagers with sports, jobs, and responsibilities.



In a student survey conducted by YouthTruth, students weigh in on the obstacles that are presented with online learning

I miss the structure of the in person school day. The set amount of time I’m in a certain spot in the building and the set amount of time teachers have to do whatever is planned for class. Connected learning usually means teachers let us go early to do whatever is in their lesson plans on our own. While I enjoy doing things independently and doing them when I want, I’ve found that teachers can assign more than what would be on a normal school day. Teachers keep you on zoom for a certain amount of time, and then say you have the rest of class to get whatever is assigned done. It’s almost never enough time. The classwork that isn’t finished during the period gets turned into to homework, but the cycle repeats itself for every class. Assignments pile up to the point where I’m staying up later than usual to try and finish things.


I guess what I’m saying is that I’d rather trade the sleeping in, sweatpants, and snacks that come with connected learning for the structure and the social time that comes with in person learning. I love the comfort of my home and not having to worry about hitting someone when trying to park in the morning, but it does come with some more work than I would like and missing my friends. I wouldn’t mind connected learning every once in a while when I would greatly appreciate the chance to sleep in besides the weekend, but being connected through a screen for an entire week reminds me that I do appreciate going to school and I’m grateful that we have been able to be together for most of the school year thus far.