Students, staff complete first week of e-learning

Sophomore+Trystan+Schultz+works+on+chemistry+homework.

Sophomore Trystan Schultz works on chemistry homework.

Sophomore Trystan Schultz works on chemistry homework.

With the first week of e-learning completed, students, teachers and staff are reacting to the change of learning virtually. 

Curriculum for the remainder of the year has been modified to include only the most important content. Grades can no longer be lower past the last day in class as D127 follows “do no educational harm”.

“We want students to do what they can to keep learning, but we teachers and our administration, and the Illinois State Board of Education all know that this is a difficult time for everyone,” said English teacher Amy Alderson.

There are differing opinions on how effective eLearning will be but everyone agrees that meeting with a teacher helps students understand the content. 

This is obviously a little different, but I believe technology gives us the opportunity to do things differently,” said Superintendent Mikkel Storaasli.

Administrators are working hard to make sure students and staff are well informed of what is happening throughout the pandemic. 

“We take guidance from the State Board of Education, the Governor’s office, and the various Departments of Health,” Storaasli said. “We meet as a full administrative team via Zoom several times per week. Furthermore, our Principals and Associate Principals are meeting with Department Chairs and Teachers regularly. We try to gather the best information we can and make the best decisions with that info.

Although it is important to follow, several people have struggled with learning at home and having to isolate t

With the first week of e-learning completed, students, teachers and staff are reacting to the change of learning virtually. 

Curriculum for the remainder of the year has been modified to include only the most important content. Grades can no longer be lower past the last day in class as D127 follows “do no educational harm,” according to the Illinois State Board of Education.

“We want students to do what they can to keep learning, but we teachers and our administration, and the Illinois State Board of Education all know that this is a difficult time for everyone,” said English teacher Amy Alderson.

There are differing opinions on how effective e-learning will be, but everyone agrees that meeting with a teacher helps students understand the content. 

This is obviously a little different, but I believe technology gives us the opportunity to do things differently,” said Superintendent Mikkel Storaasli.

Administrators are working hard to make sure students and staff are well informed of what is happening throughout the pandemic. 

“We take guidance from the State Board of Education, the Governor’s office, and the various Departments of Health,” Storaasli said. “We meet as a full administrative team via Zoom several times per week. Furthermore, our principals and associate principals are meeting with department chairs and teachers regularly. We try to gather the best information we can and make the best decisions with that info.”

Although it is important to follow, several people have struggled with learning at home and having to isolate themselves from their friends.  

“I think it’s definitely a big change, and not being in the same class with our classmates makes it tougher. We’re social creatures and crave contact with other humans,” Storaasli said. “In addition, we know that some students have had technical issues. We’re working with them to get those issues resolved, but it’s another variable that can be challenging. For what the situation is right now, I think our students and staff are doing amazingly well.”

Teachers are taking videos of themselves in order to help the students learn their content. 

“I have had to make videos of myself talking about the book, and I had to take photos of my book to have on the screen while I do that. I also have had to figure out a different way to discuss the book since we can’t be together in class to discuss it,” Alderson said. 

Teachers are changing the way that they would have taughtin class because of the new learning environment. 

“I am trying to keep things as normal as possible for the students. So for my AAT classes, we take daily notes, are given practice problems to compete on their own, progress checks, Quizizz, and summative assessments,” said math teacher Jill Grunloh. “I am making video recordings that students can use to help them with the understanding of the new material.”

Teachers are trying to gauge their students’ understanding on the new exams and look through the assignments they turn in.

“At first I was a little nervous, but so far I think it is going pretty well. I just hope that the students are taking the time to read the comments I send back to them, otherwise they won’t progress with their learning,” Grunloh said.

Teachers discussed the struggles they have to go through with planning their classes now.

“I think math is one of the harder subjects to do via e-learning since a lot of students find math intimidating. Without videos, I don’t think many students would find learning math possible,” Grunloh said.

Some classes are easier to plan. They have the curriculum, but it has still been changed.

“I am fortunate because my Junior English Honors classes were just about to start a book, so I am basically asking my students to read that book and do some assignments to help them think about that book,” Alderson said. “For my English as a Second Language students, I am offering them help via email and Zoom.”

Updates can be found at https://www.d127.org/updates. Students will now learn on a block schedule.