You have probably been inundated with news related to ‘these uncertain times.’ Perhaps the idea of this uncertainty has become cliche, or perhaps you are in the midst of this uncertainty as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.
However you’re feeling about uncertainty, one of the likely factors adding to this feeling is the fate of your upcoming high school year. Depending on where you live, you are either facing drastic changes to the way you attend school in person or the prospect of not attending in-person school at all.
The idea of all online classes can seem daunting and difficult, especially if you enjoy in-person learning. In fact, the NSHSS Student Voices of America Survey shows that about 32 percent of students we surveyed said they would not want to attend online school.
Still, every obstacle offers an opportunity to look at the bright side and consider possible opportunities. The same survey shows that about 53 percent of students surveyed could adjust to e-learning if necessary.
So, in the spirit of positivity, let’s look at six benefits of online high school classes that might make you feel more comfortable about the upcoming school year!
1. Enjoy a more flexible schedule.
A major benefit to online high school classes is the ability to enjoy a more flexible learning schedule than you would have while attending high school in-person.
Even if your high school requires you to be online at a certain time for lectures or lessons, chances are, you can work through the rest of lesson modules and homework when doing so feels most natural to you.
If you work better in the evenings or have responsibilities in the mornings, you can finish your schoolwork later, or vice versa.
This more flexible schedule will help you get used to working through classes when it feels best for you, rather than learning alongside all of your fellow students at set times of day.
You might also enjoy more focused and frequent breaks while working through online classes, which will allow you to have a more relaxing experience than you likely had while attending in person.
2. Choose your learning environment.
Online learning also allows you to create your learning environment differently than you can at school. While at home, you can create your own workspace in which you feel most comfortable.
Maybe you fill your learning space with inspirational quotes, photos that make you happy, comfortable pillows on which to sit, etc.
Of course, not every student has an ideal home environment in which to learn, so try to work with your parents or guardians to find a solution and make sure you have somewhere to go with strong internet connection and space to focus prior to online classes in the fall.
3. Work at your own pace.
During online high school, you will also be able to work more at your own pace. You will have deadlines, of course, but you will likely have more wiggle room when it comes to getting your work done.
You can also advocate for your particular learning style and see if your teachers have plans for students who are hands-on learners. If you are an auditory learner, make sure you have the ability to listen to lessons as well as read them. If you are a visual learner, these online lessons will likely work well for you. Online learning will likely allow for more accommodations when it comes to diverse learning styles.
No matter how you learn, though, you will have more flexibility with online learning than you did at school, which will allow you to work through your lessons at a pace that works for you.
4. Eliminate social distractions.
Though you might enjoy the social aspect of school, learning online will eliminate the distractions that come from working alongside your friends.
Even with social distancing guidelines in place, you can find time to socialize outside or over video chat with friends outside of your online classes. That means you can focus solely on class when you’re in class and hopefully get more work done in a shorter period of time.
Online high school is also a great opportunity for students who do not enjoy the social aspect of high school for whatever reason. Now, you do not have to sit in-person all day with students if you feel uncomfortable in social settings and can choose which social interactions to indulge while social distancing.
5. Utilize social media skills to build an online community.
Your generation has honed social media and internet skills to build positive, collaborative online communities. Now, you have the chance to do that with your online high school community!
You know best how interactions through online platforms can work well and how they can go wrong. So, take the initiative to give your teachers some feedback about how discussions could work for your classes or how you respond best in online social situations. Think about the values you want to uphold in your online high school community and share those with your class.
This kind of ownership over your online classroom experience will help you feel more involved in the process and hopefully more excited about the benefits of learning online.
6. Develop time management and independence skills.
Finally, taking high school courses online will help you build the time management and independence skills you will need in college and beyond.
Since you likely won’t have the same level of accountability from teachers and classmates when you’re working independently at home, you will need to set reminders for your own deadlines and learn how to work in a focused, intentional manner while not in a classroom setting.
Assuming your college classes will require the same level of accountability, while learning online, you will acquire the skills you need to succeed as a more independent learner. This will help prepare you for life after high school!