The Student News Site of The Webb Schools

Webb Canyon Chronicle

The Student News Site of The Webb Schools

Webb Canyon Chronicle

The Student News Site of The Webb Schools

Webb Canyon Chronicle

Webb students seek to strive in online learning despite many challenges

Sunny Yu
Jonathan Yu (‘22) studies at home.

With the first day of classes behind them, Webb students are settling into their schedules for the new school year. Convocation taking place online for the first time in Webb history confirmed that it will be a year like no other. This year, with classes and school events beginning entirely online, students will have to overcome the challenges of online learningembrace benefits that come along, and look actively for solutions. 

Schools across the United States shifted from in-person to online learning at the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic. Students and parents have made their own opinions clear at this change in the learning system. USA Today draws some similarities between online learning and “hell” while others appreciate the security virtual learning offers. It is clear that this new form of learning has presented both challenges and unexpected benefits for students across the world. 

At Webb, the administration has decided to divide the year into six modules, but this may be subject to change in the future. The current online learning schedule proves to be a challenge for many students. 

Some dislike the changes to the schedule, and multiple students have suggested that the new way of learning is not as effective compared to in-person classes. 

“I’ve gotten so used to the threeblock schedule,” said Alex Xiao (‘21). I would prefer the old schedule over the new one.” 

I think that learning over zoom is very ineffective compared to an in-class setting,” said William Li (‘22). “Because there is not that inter-personal connection through the screen.  I also get distracted easily at home. 

Besides lower efficiency, online learning has also posed huge challenges for students’ social life. Learning at home each day, students are no longer able to go to the dining hall with their friends, relax in the dorm, or attend weekly social events on campus, which were all important parts of each student’s life beyond the academics.  

“I miss the interactions at school and seeing all my friends,” said Kalman Dong (‘22). 

Furthermore, because of shortened classes, students have also incurred other difficulties with learning and focusing.  It is not surprising that many students now miss seeing and interacting with the faculty and their friends, a struggle that has been exacerbated by a lack of interpersonal connection and distractions at home.  

A lack of communication appears to be a common concern for most students, since they are limited by the 45minutes classes to communicate with students behind a screen instead of a nearly unlimited amount of time without any barriers.   

“I dislike the lack of personal connection as well as the amount of homework,” said Ryan Lin (‘21). “The 45-minute block is perfect timing to avoid burnout and fatigue, though.” 

“Zoom can be somewhat glitchy at times, and it is very time consuming for [the] already short classes,” said Abbie Arroyo (‘21). The fatigue of being online for so long is another downside.” 

Exhaustion is starting to catch up to some students, as the increase in work means more time behind the screenUnder the new learning module, students not only have a different social life but need to adapt to completely new learning schedules. For many students, the unsettling shifts in the schedule as well as the workload contributed to their stress.  

“I don’t really like the 45-minute classes, and it’s hard to learn new and challenging concepts in such a short class time,;” said Madeline Lilley (‘22). “Teachers can’t develop tough ideas.  I don’t like that we have more homework because of shortened class times.”  

Because of the shortened class times, higher frequency of breaksand long pauses between classes, some students end up spending the same amount of time on screens that they would have if classes were 90-minutes in length.  

Many students also express annoyance with the growing loadf homework attributed to shorter class times. For some, meeting two times a week still feels like overwhelming due to the constant cycle of homework they need to complete. 

Online studies are most detrimental to new students, as incoming students may have an even tougher time getting to know their peers. Entering a new school is a challenge socially even with the physical contact of in-person education. The Zoom classes simply cannot provide the same capabilities to create a social environment amongst the students. 

I dislike online school because it is hard to meet new people in Zoom,” commented Austin Ra (‘23). 

Social interaction is an integral part of the high school experience. Without it, even returning students are feeling out of place., 

The social restrictions of online learning have made it hard to collaborate with peers and get the amount of social interaction I am used to,” Maksym Graham (‘23).  

Collaboration within the classroom is unmatched by anything Zoom can offer. Many Webb students lament the fact that they cannot communicate as well as they can during inperson classes. Discussions and group work are not the same as beforeand students aren’t feeling the challengethey are used to. 

Nevertheless, the new learning schedule provides students with more time to catch up with their work each week, offering other benefits as well. Some find the new schedule to be especially understanding with Wednesdays off.  

“Having Wednesdays off allow me to sleep in, catch up on work, and prepare for the upcoming volleyball season,” said Alex. 

Many feel that the absence of classes helps balance the week out while letting them take a much-needed break from the screens. The more flexible schedule also gives students the opportunities to manage their time based on personal needs, making plans that help them stay on top of their work. 

“I have mixed emotions about online learning,” said Maksym. “I feel that I have more free time which allows me to better manage my time and plan ahead for my week.” 

Despite being online, students still have the chance to “see” each other and faculty members during Zoom sessions, whether through weekend activities or classes. Students can also look for ways to reconnect with the Webb community through various virtual school events and club activities.  

“Being able to see everyone is great because I’m a social person,” said Abbie . “It is kind of cool to see everyone’s environment in Zoom.” 

The current learning mode also guarantees security and health for students located around the world. Without too much physical contact with others, students learning at home can study and live in an environment that is safe from infections.  

“I like that I get to go to class and still feel safe,” said Austin. 

Living in the age of COVID-19, a time of the unknown, students must realize their privileges of having a safe learning space and other benefits pf online learning. Although online learning stagnates social life and interferes with the normal learning paces, Webb students need to embody the spirit of unbounded thinking in their actions as they seek to overcome these challenges by either participating in social events on the weekends, catching up with friends, or making plans to stay organized and motivated during online learning sessions. 

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About the Contributors
Sunny Yu
Sunny Yu, Editor-in-Chief
Sunny Yu (‘22) is a prime example of the protagonist personality. As a natural leader, she is active, thoughtful, caring, and serves as the Editor-in-Chief of the WCC, a member of the Chapel Council, the captain of the varsity cross-country team, and a founding member of Webb’s Breakfast literary magazine. Sunny is also vocal and passionate about the enforcement of social justice and representation of marginalized groups: at the WCC, she utilizes journalism as a tool to shed light on many controversial issues, never shying away from the ability to make a lasting impact. During the weekends, you can often find her on a run to “The Spot,” a smoothie shop, playing soccer on Chandler, and occasionally annoying the library staff for borrowing too many books, such as her favorite, Waiting for the Barbarians, a wonderful allegory on human relationships. As a protagonist, she finds joy in guiding young journalists to grow into their best selves. This year, Sunny hopes that the WCC can continue covering important topics and spark conversations while bringing people laughter and keeping them informed. Favorite song: "Sunflower Feelings" by Kuzu Mellow
George Cardenas
George Cardenas, Editor of News
An avid music listener, George Cardenas (‘23)’s perfect weekend involves a homework-free day at the beach with “Night Boat to Cairo” by Madness blasting in the background. In fact, George considers himself to be a very easy-going, optimistic person, who loves nothing more than relaxing with his friends or experimenting on the piano. Although he does enjoy tranquility, George also works with his fellow members of the WSC honor cabinet to uphold Webb’s Honor Code. George is passionate about staying up to date with current events and wants to continue keeping everyone informed during his time on the Webb Canyon Chronicle. A typical Capricorn, George is disciplined, strategic, and clever— similar to a wolf, his self-proclaimed spirit animal. George looks forward to working on the WCC this year as Co-Editor of News and hopes to write authentic, factually correct articles that enlighten the Webb community. Favorite song: "Tadow" by FKJ and Masego
Kaylynn Chang
Kaylynn Chang, Editor-In-Chief
An avid bookworm, journalist, and sushi lover, head day student prefect Kaylynn Chang (‘23) comes back to the Webb Canyon Chronicle for one last year as Editor- In- Chief! If you want someone to cook you a heartwarming meal, give you the best book recommendations, or help you with homework, Kaylynn is the right person for you. Equipped with a loud whistle, she manages to successfully get her voice heard through creative writing and independent journalism, as well as helping others achieve the same by leading affinity groups. She wants to continue using her talent and passion for justice for a career in law or politics after her Webb experience is over. When she’s not learning through everyone else’s life stories and memoirs, Kaylynn enjoys working out, cooking Korean food, and listening to her favorite songs by Cigarettes After Sex. From baking delicious snacks to giving you the most genuine advice, Kaylynn has the perfect recipe for looking after others and giving back to the community. As Editor-in- Chief, she hopes to make the WCC an accessible resource for all students and aspiring journalists to learn and share news about Webb.  Favorite Song: “Sunsetz" by Cigarettes after Sex 
Yiyi Ouyang
Yiyi Ouyang, Co-Editor of Opinion
Yiyi Ouyang (‘21), out of Diamond Bar, CA enters his senior year as Webb Canyon Chronicle’s Editor of Opinions. Besides his leadership role on the Journalism team, Yiyi is also chief editor of the yearbook and a member of the Honor Committee. In his free time, Yiyi enjoys playing basketball, golf, as well as going hiking. Though the pandemic hasn’t allowed him to partake in these activities very often, he has been able to pass the time by watching Brooklyn Nine-Nine and That ‘70s Show. Now that school is back in session, Yiyi is looking to make the most out of his final year at Webb. As an editor for WCC, he hopes to create a safe space and wants students to feel comfortable submitting content.  
Connor Plunkett
Connor Plunkett, Editor of Audiovisual
An expert of the humanities, Connor Plunkett (‘23) returns to the Webb Canyon Chronicle as the Editor of Audiovisual for his final year in the program. While Connor enjoys debating and listening to music — specifically Kanye West and MF Doom — most of his time is dedicated to soccer, a lifelong passion he inherited from his family. Whether he is hanging out with friends or enforcing the Honor Code as the co-chair of the honor committee, Connor’s charismatic personality makes him a standout presence on the Webb campus. Despite preferring challenging humanities classes with historical and literary analysis, Connor’s focus and expertise are the WCC’s media section, contributing to podcasts and vlogs alike. His favorite film is La Heine, and he’s currently reading The Brothers Karamazov, both incredibly intense and sophisticated pieces of media and perfect testaments to Connor’s originality and intellect in his approach to journalism. Connor can’t wait to revive “Austin on The Block” and draw future journalists into the WCC with his magnetic work.   Favorite song: “Devil in a New Dress” by Kanye West 

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