In-person learning generates collaboration


Olivia Perkins, asst. opinions editor

Last year, I missed people. I missed collaborating with people.

I missed when the teachers would force us to group up and create a presentation of what we had been learning for that unit. 

Even if I was told to pair up and heard a groan from the other side of the room,  some sort of relief would crash over me. I missed the support that peers had to offer. Online school had many challenges, but what I missed the most was collaboration.

School has this environment that you really cannot find anywhere near your computer. You walk into the building and are hit with busy ambiance.

Being able to feel people surround you, and just the feeling of having purpose is refreshing and familiar.

This life I am living that’s teetering on the edge of mid-pandemic and post-pandemic has brought out this new version of myself that I could have never seen coming.

I have a newfound urge to experience more.

It is not that I did not know I needed this two years ago, it is just that now I became so tired of experiencing my high school life tucked away in my bed sheets cuddled up with my Chromebook.

Living vicariously through my peers during my sophomore year was so isolating.Life felt like a cycle of instability and confusion.

I had this love-hate relationship with online school. My mental health was on firmer ground while my body ached from immobility. School became my life and consumed me entirely.

With the pandemic, I would wake up every morning and would not have any sense of where I was in terms of progression as a student and person.

I felt as though everything I did was for nothing and I would never receive anything in return for the countless hours I was putting into my school work.

I did not hate this past year; I was just so lost that I did not realize how much I needed this life back until I was thrown back into it.

Although it is quite simple, having the opportunity to collaborate with peers has brought a part of me back to life.

Having the company of classmates through group work or even in general has provided me with not only immediate feedback but brings me back to waking up and knowing my  purpose.

Life does not feel like “school, homework, repeat”for me anymore.

I can happily balance school with life.

I can feel the presence of my peers without worrying about my wifi connection.

As a student, teenager, friend, daughter, and person, I am soaking this up.

It’s not perfect but it’s treating me better than the past year.

I’m not romanticizing this version of life, I’m holding it close to me in case uncertainty washes over me again.