Walton adapts to at-home learning

Junior Hayleigh Walton works on flashcards for her AP US History class during the mandatory closure of schools due to the  coronavirus. Walton has maintained a similar schedule to her school days over the break.

Photo courtesy of Hayleigh Walton

Junior Hayleigh Walton works on flashcards for her AP US History class during the mandatory closure of schools due to the coronavirus. Walton has maintained a similar schedule to her school days over the break. "At-home learning has definitely been more challenging because it’s a test of my self-discipline," Walton said.

Caleb Goss, Editor

In a statement issued March 13, Governor Ralph Northam announced that all schools in Virginia will be closed for the next two weeks. Moving to online, teachers now have to curate lessons for students, whether that be video group chats or communication through Google Classroom. For students, this means a new way of learning and adapting to a more self-motivated style. For junior Hayleigh Walton, this two week period started with making a list. 

“At the beginning of the week, I made a list of all the assignments that I needed to complete,” Walton said. “Since I have different classes on A and B days, I worked on A day assignments one day and B day assignments the next. If I finish early, I begin working on the next days’ assignments.” 

Along with regular classes, Walton has to keep with AP classes. As of now, College Board has not postponed or rescheduled the AP tests. With this in mind, Walton and AP students across the country have to continue to work and maintain focus. Though she continues to study, Walton is not too concerned, as she knows others are in the same boat. 

“I’m not sure how I feel about AP tests now that we have two weeks off, because I know our school isn’t the only one who has to deal with this change in schedule. Hopefully, we can still learn all the material before the exams. I’ll keep studying in order to be prepared for any situation, but right now I’m not too concerned because I know that the other students and teacher are having the same thoughts about the AP exams.”

Having to keep up with Honors and AP courses in order to stay on top of things, Walton gives herself breaks in between so she doesn’t feel overworked. So far, she has found this system of to be successful.  

“I try to focus only on school work for an hour or so at a time and then I go take a break for another half hour or so,” Walton said. “I felt pretty productive because I finished most of my homework in the morning and have the rest of the day to do whatever I want.”

With this temporary form of learning in place, new challenges for students arise, one of those being self-motivation. 

“At-home learning has definitely been more challenging because it’s a test of my self-discipline. At school, there is time set aside to get my work done, but at home, I have to proactively choose a time to work on homework,” Walton said. It’s also pretty difficult to have everyone in my family working on something different at the same time.”

When she’s not working on her school work, Walton spends her spare time with her brothers and takes this time to catch up with those around her. 

“My older brothers came home from college because of the virus, so I’ve been spending more time hanging out with them because I don’t get to see them very often,” Walton said. “I’ve also been going on some runs and bike rides with my younger brothers to help them release some of their energy after working inside all day.”

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