Alba Villareal, Gwinnett Magazine Intern
The past few months have been anything but calm. With hurricanes and snow, I don't think we've ever missed this many days of school. But fortunately, no extra 30 minutes were added to our school days thanks to Digital Learning Days.
At first, the irritation of having to do work on our "days off" took over our ability to see the benefits that it brought us.
For schools on block schedule like Shiloh, one day off is more like 2 days, and the workload we miss puts us significantly behind in our curriculum. This is especially true for AP and IB students who suffer trying to catch up when they get back. Digital learning days prevent us from wasting days that we can't afford to lose.
The first Digital Learning Day came to us as a surprise, since we weren't expecting the workload. It was like being given more homework, but this time without learning anything in class. The idea was that we had a free day, so we had more time, but in reality, most students started the assignments well past the time they would usually get out of school.
When school was back in session, assignments weren't collected. It was almost like a guessing game in each class wondering which teacher would remember and which would forget. By the time the second and third Digital Learning Day came, there was no more pressure to do any assignments since our work wasn't being turned in or even discussed in any classes. Despite this, I applaud the teachers who were super quick to put in that 0 when the work wasn't turned in.
Now to the assignments themselves. For some classes, it was like being given busy work -- work that had no substance or intention to get us to learn anything new. And for other classes, the work had too much substance and forced us to learn something new. This imbalance was exhausting as the work where I put in real effort in ended up being the work that didn't get collected.
Overall, Digital Learning Day wasn't the worst thing in the world. It was more like a bad gift given to you by someone you love. It's the thought that counts.