Online Learning VS In-Person Learning (FACEOFF)

Samantha Elkins and Camilla Bondy

Online (S.E.)

Staying safe, being in the comfort of my own home and having a later wake up time are some examples of how online learning is more favorable than returning to in-person school. 

Both students’ and teachers’ lives were heavily impacted once COVID-19 shut down schools this past March. Though new and confusing at first, students and teachers have now adjusted to online school and continue to learn in a safe way. 

Online school provides an environment where students can learn without having to worry about contracting or spreading COVID-19. I am very cautious when I leave my house, and if I had to go back to school, I would constantly wonder if I am going to get sick, distracting me from learning. From firsthand experience, I know many teenagers do not take the virus seriously, so despite the safety measures taken to be back in-person, students can still do what they want on the weekends with no supervision. 

While I am young and in good physical health, many teachers and administration are older and more susceptible to becoming seriously ill from in-person school during a pandemic. The safety of teachers is so important, especially in trying times like these, when many already cannot return because of health conditions. Remaining online prioritizes the safety of teachers. 

Learning at home allows me to go to school in my pajamas and have more freedom throughout my day. My teachers allow me to use the restroom whenever I need to (just not for too long) and snack throughout the day. 

I feel better at home, where I do not have to put on a cute outfit, plan to meet friends in the hallway so I do not walk to class alone or cover up acne. I learn more efficiently when comfortable and online school provides that for me. 

As a teenager, I love sleeping in late. School went from starting at 7:20 to starting at 8:30 once we switched to online. Though it may not seem like a lot, that extra hour of sleep means all the difference for sleep-deprived teenagers and I feel more rested because of it. Along with this, students get even more sleep because they do not have to leave their house early to beat the line of cars outside the parking lot. I would leave my house 25 minutes early while living five minutes away because of the congested traffic and parking at school. 

Though I miss interacting with my friends at school, through “Facetime” and “Snapchat” I still talk to them throughout the day and they help answer any homework questions. 

Even if we went back to school in-person, students would still go on their phones to talk with friends, despite the no phone policy. Being at home does not feel that different. 


In Person (C.B.)

Connection issues, a lack of social interactions and the constant distraction of being at home consist only a handful of reasons why in-person school benefits students more than online school. This global pandemic seems everlasting as it started as a two-week lockdown and has since transitioned into a six-month quarantine. 

Kids all over the world have been forced to switch to virtual classes and it has not been anything close to easy. As an extroverted individual, going to school and interacting with my teachers and friends is something I look forward to every day.

When I am in a classroom sitting with my classmates, I find it easier to work on my assignments and get help as quickly as I need with the teacher just a few steps away. Waking up to just sit at the same desk and stare at a computer screen all day has made me lose motivation to learn. It has also made me feel extremely lonely. 

However, I am grateful for the teachers who do their best to make their zoom calls as similar as they can to their in-person classroom environment and those who rapidly answer my questions through platforms such as “Google Classroom,” “Microsoft Teams” and “Gmail.” 

Being a senior, this is my last year to experience the full thrill of high school along with making memories with my high school friends before we all take our own paths to different colleges. This year, all seniors look forward to activities such as Homecoming, Grad bash, Prom, Senior picnic, and of course, Graduation.

These memories serve as moments that I want to remember for the rest of my life. Due to the fact that classes switched online, these activities that I, along with many of my other senior friends, waited four years for now seem unachievable. 

Switching to online school comes along with a major problem: technological difficulties. Thankfully I own access to my own computer and Wi-Fi, but it still does not seem to be enough for me to get through my virtual day without problems. 

I continuously have audio issues and constantly get kicked out of my “Zoom” classes. Although I cannot control my connection issues, some teachers have doubts of whether I am just skipping class or honestly having connectivity issues. 

This issue adds a new level of stress to my life because I miss out on parts of class lectures, causing me to fall behind. It seems like once I fix my own technological problems other students or the teacher start experiencing them which just continues to interrupt the learning process.