Tuesday is first-ever e-learning day for freshmen and sophomores

Rosalita Mitchell, Staff Writer

During Tuesday’s Day of Caring and Senior Seminar activities for upperclassmen, freshmen and sophomores will have  an eLearning day. They will stay at home and complete online classwork through Canvas.

“ELearning was created by a group of teachers who designed a curriculum based around the idea of ‘What would be really good things for students to know that maybe teachers don’t have the time in the school day to be able to teach?'” eLearning coach Kara Heichelbech said.

Though underclassmen will not attend school on Tuesday, they must complete the eLearning module. Consequences for students who do not complete their work include receiving an unexcused absence and participating in a mandatory bullying seminar with their STaR teacher. While the eLearning assignments could potentially take six hours, Heichelbech says they will ultimately benefit students.

“ELearning is important for multiple reasons,” Heichelbech said. “One, in a lot of careers and for students preparing to go to college, you are learning components online. For example, in my job I just had to do four different components, all online, for training. It’s something that’s out in the workforce, so it is really good for students to have exposure and experience with that versus going to college or going into a career never having experienced it. Also, it’s really important because last year we had a really mild winter, but in the times when we have a lot of inclement weather, eLearning days will allow students to continue their academics, while not necessarily being at school.”

The courses freshmen and sophomores will learn about are founded on character education, such as civic responsibility and bullying. However, each grade will also be learning How-Tos. Freshmen will learn school skills, such as how to calculate their GPA, how to get a sports pass and how to practice digital citizenship. Sophomores will learn adult skills such as how to tie a tie, how to change a tire, how to get a parking pass and how to get a work permit. Heichelbech says students are intended to enjoy the courses, but that the administration will accept constructive criticism on how to improve the system.

“Honestly, [the administration] would really like feedback too. We want it to be done independently and we hope that it is beneficial to students. It being fun is an added bonus, but we definitely want them thinking,’this is really relevant in my life.’ We would love feedback, so we are very open to what the students think,”  Heichelbech said.

Freshmen and sophomores will have until 11:59 p.m. on Sept. 15 to finish any eLearning work not completed on Tuesday.