Online Schooling: Freedom to Move at your own Pace
Okay, let’s be blunt for a moment. School can sometimes feel like a waste of time. Why? The first reason may be thatit is challenging to sit and actually pay attention through five classes each day. I mean, how many teachers actually hold your attention through the whole hour every time? Second, maybe you are bored because you were able to finish your assignment fifteen minutes into class and then realize that you have to sit there and wait for the hour to end. Perhaps the third reason is that you struggle to understand the subject through the time in class and then spend hours with the homework each night, only to get a poor grade in the end. These are serious issues that parents and students should be concerned about!
Every student is different, so why should we all be expected to learn the same things in the same ways at the same pace? The reason I chose to switch to an online school was that I was bored in class. I never had to work for an “A” grade, and I didn’t need a whole hour on a topic to understand. I was usually halfway through the worksheets before the teacher had finished passing them out, much less explained what to do. I was reading classic novels in Kindergarten and tested at a sixth grade reading level in first grade. In sixth grade, I tested at an eighth grade reading level, which of course was advanced, so the school still considered me an exceptional student… but I had only progressed two reading levels over the course of five years! That was just unacceptable.
My family decided it was time for a change. One day, my parents went to a K12 information session. I was just sitting at the back of the room playing with the other kids, but I heard some things that really caught my interest. The more I heard, the more I wanted to give it a try. My parents discussed it for a while and I told my mom that I thought this was a great idea for me. I asked her to let us give it a try, even if my sisters stayed in school and I was the only one who tried it and even if we were only going to try it out for a little while. Less than one year after my sisters and I enrolled in the Idaho Virtual Academy I tested at a twelfth-grade-plus reading level. More than four years of progress had been made in less than one year. I was much happier because I was finally allowed to move at my own pace. I wasn’t held back by the traditional system. Don’t get me wrong, it was an uphill battle on most days. This isn’t an easy solution, but as far as I have seen, it was definitely the best choice for my education.
Learning is an individualized process. Everyone is very different, and learning can only occur when one can take time in areas they struggle and move forward in the subjects where they excel. Online schools allow you to sit down with a lesson and work until you have learned the topic. If that means you spend two hours on English and twenty minutes on Math, that’s great! You are moving at your pace and learning from every moment spent. Now, isn’t that what learning should be all about?
Tiffany Higgins is a graduate of Idaho Virtual Academy and is currently attending Brigham Young University – Idaho, majoring in English. She has joined our team as a summer intern.
Video featuring Tiffany: What is an Online School
Information Events: Learn about K¹²