Question and Answer Interview with Mashall Rasul '21, Full-time Distance Learner
1) What was your impression after the first week of distance learning?
It's going okay. I think that everyone is trying their best to make distance learning work and make it feel like we are actually in school. Mrs. Angus, the distance learning coordinator, has been helping us a lot. She is organized (in terms of making personalized schedules for us to make it easier to access our classes on time, updating us on any changes that happen, etc.) and is very prompt about returning our emails whenever we have issues and listening to our feedback.
There have been a few problems and complications. The biggest problem so far is the volume. I can hear the teachers when they are speaking near the computer. But, occasionally, when the teacher starts walking away from the computer, I can not hear them clearly anymore. But, Mrs. Angus is ordering lapel mics for all the teachers to solve this problem. And while I can hear the teacher clearly, I cannot hear my classmates which is not a problem now but could be in the future if some classes decide to do a class discussion (because you do not want to repeat something that was already said or interrupt one of your classmates). Labs, of course, are a bit of an issue. But, Mrs. Dickenson has been very considerate and understanding and is trying to make it work. I know that she has been researching on how to do certain labs at home. Overall, I think that the teachers (and Mrs. Angus) are trying their best to make sure we have the same quality of education as those who are doing in-person classes.
2) I am taking some later once I clean up my space.
3) How is your routine different?
It has been a little bit weird with classes starting because both my sisters and my brother are at home and doing their classes online. So we all have different schedules and routines. My routine is not that different than the normal, in-person school routine. I wake up at 7:25 and get ready for school (shower, eat breakfast, change clothes, etc). Then, at 8:00, I sign into assembly and then into first period. At break, I like to grab a snack and some water. For lunch, my siblings and I usually prepare the night before. So, at lunchtime, I usually cut up some fruit and eat the lunch I prepared the night before (usually like a sandwich). After lunch, I attend the next 2 periods. After school, I grab a snack and start working on my homework.
4) What class was your favorite this past week online?
It's a tie between advanced graphic design and AP Comparative Government. I am really interested in graphic design, specifically, the marketing/communication side of it but am also interested in global studies, international relations, stuff like that so I am excited for both classes.
5) Were there any complications this week?
There were some complications this week but Mrs. Angus mentioned beforehand that was expected. Before school started, they sent us an email about how to access the Convocation at 8:00. And so, on the first day of school, my brother and I were trying to access the Convocation at 8 in the morning through the zoom link they sent us but it was not letting us in. Around 8:10, we got an email from Mrs. Angus on how we are Convocation was actually at 8:30 and we needed to join the assembly link for high school students. But, she sent us an email later, containing a video from Mr. Lamas. He apologized for the last-minute communication and said how it was be avoided in the future (link to the video: https://www.loom.com/share/7c68f341a23c44a9afac1d25c4df47da?utm_medium=gif).
6) How do you motivate yourself to stay productive even at home?
It is hard. I still haven't completely grasped the concept that we are in school yet. In order to be more productive, I have established a working environment at my desk. So, basically, I only so schoolwork in that location (and if I want to do something else not related to school, I go to a more comfortable place to establish a mindset that I have to only work at that location if that makes sense). I try to keep my space as organized as possible but sometimes it just does not work out. I also try to minimize distractions. For example, usually, when I am working, my phone is out of sight (either in the drawer or across the room).