At-Home Learning Poses Changes to Coursework

Kavya Ramesh | Of The Talon staff

With the closure of schools temporarily due to COVID-19, an alternative learning plan (ALP) was created to continue learning at home.

The ALP program was created to maintain relationships, keep students connected to school and classmates, continue instruction and feedback towards the progress of essential course outcomes, and consider and try new activities to enhance instruction in the future. Platforms such as Zoom, a video conferencing app, Google Classroom, and Canvas are how teachers are continuing to teach their students. Many teachers are having optional Zoom meetings once a week to check in with their students and sometimes even lecture. Language Arts teacher Cindy Golden said she has Zoom meetings once daily, similar to Flex Time.

“Students can come and go as they please. This is just a time where students know I am available right away and can get questions answered,” Golden said.

Subjects such as math, history, language arts, and science may seem straightforward with how the material will be taught; however, many electives are met with new challenges. Sophomore Jessica Reini is a member of the Symphonic Band. A usual band class comprises students playing their instruments and working on music for upcoming concerts and competitions. With the spread of COVID-19, these events seem very unlikely to be able to take place, so instead, teachers have had to come up with some unusual methods of teaching. Reini said that it is easier to learn when she is in person with the teacher, but she likes having more of a choice when to do her work, eat, etc.  

“The [band] directors have just started talking about doing some sort of virtual band, where we would probably work on a piece as an ensemble through Zoom. Meanwhile, every week we listen to a band performance on YouTube and we have to fill out a questionnaire on the band’s performance techniques and musical qualities,” Reini said.

Physical Education teacher Jonathan Bunyard said that he has encouraged his students to just get outside and move.

“For all physical education classes, we are requiring students to log their activity on to an excel sheet and turn that back in weekly to their respective PE teacher. In addition, all of the PE teachers have compiled a list of resources for the students to use as a reference for workout ideas,” Bunyard said.

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