What KHS Students thought of Online Learning
Our students have given us a great insight into their online learning over the course of the COVID-19 period between March 24 and May 22, 2020, where 7 weeks of the academic year was completed at home.
With a sizeable 958 survey responses from our student population of 1188, KHS students spoke of a largely positive online learning experience, as well as an insight into mental wellbeing during their most prolonged absence from school since they were 4 or 5 year old’s.
Key findings included:
- When asked to select subject areas that were effective for online learning: KHS students considered English to be the most effective subject area for online learning, followed by Mathematics, and HSIE subjects.
- Nearly half of our students were submitting completed learning activities on a weekly basis, while another third submitted completed learning activities daily.
- 88% of students expressed confidence in using Google Classroom.
- For learning in the future, 16% of students would prefer all learning to be online, 29% of students would prefer “traditional” face-to-face learning in the classroom, and 52% of students preferred a ‘blended’ learning model (a mixture of online and traditional classroom learning), 3% suggested “other” options.
In their comments, our students expressed appreciation for their teachers that offered countless hours of feedback on their submitted work, checked in on the wellbeing when not at school and offered guidance on how to best manage and prioritise learning online:
- “After having some difficulty motivating myself and doing the work, I was able to email my student mentor teacher, Mrs Halliday. She gave me some very helpful and useful tips on remote learning. I also received some very helpful feedback from my PD teacher, food tech teacher and my maths teacher.”
- “Feedback I received from Miss Windle gave me permission not to burn out – that if I did’t have time to finish all the work during our normal lesson time, I should only spend 20 minutes of my after school time on it. This was EXTREMELY helpful”
- “My teacher complimented my work. This boosted my confidence a lot”
Other comments indicated a significant struggle with online learning and returned to school with a renewed appreciation for “normal” school that included social interaction with their peers and teachers:
“There were some days where I would lose motivation and it was very hard to get work done in the same room and desk and chair every day. I am very glad to be back at school”
While comments from some of our senior students were more philosophical, demonstrating and applying their recent sociological and anthropological studies:
“When reviewing online learning, perhaps it would be interesting to look at Deleuze’s concepts of reterritorialization and deterritorialization laid out in ‘A Thousand Plateaus’”
Overall, across all 958 respondents, Kirrawee High School students gave a 63% approval rating for online learning during the COVID-19 period. The highest approval rating came from our Year 8 cohort (70%), with our lowest approval rating from our Year 11 cohort (51%).
Upon review of these results, the Kirrawee High School staff team is committed to make the most of a unique moment in history and use it to inspire teaching and learning as we head into the 3rd decade of the 21st century. It is clear that, whether learning online or in the classroom, teacher feedback is crucial and valued. It is clear that social interaction is a big part of what makes coming to school some of the most memorable years in any person’s life. And, with close to 70% of students favouring online learning in some form, there are appears to be a clear mandate to maximise recently acquired skills and pursue a “blended” learning model that makes learning more and more accessible for our many different types of learners. Exciting times ahead!