Are Screens Affecting Students’ Relationships with Teachers?

Having a relationship through a screen is not ideal for most people.  But with COVID-19 and hybrid learning in schools, this is how student-teacher relationships are being formed.  

“I feel like my relationship with my teachers is not the best it could be,” said Audrey Montero, a freshman at Fairfield Warde. “Since we can only see each other in person once a week, it is hard to create a strong relationship and really get to know each other.” 

At Warde, hybrid learning students only get to see each teacher in person once a week.  And during this time, students don’t get much time to actually talk and connect with their teachers because the teachers are so focused on getting as much done as they can during the class period.  Some students have said trying to find a balance between creating relationships with teachers and the overwhelming amount of work is difficult as well.  

“Some of my teachers reach out to us more and ask if we need an extra day or two for an assignment and some overload with homework,” Ferhada Kojic, a senior at Fairfield Warde said. “There isn’t really an in between.”

Many teachers have been flexible about work due dates and want students to reach out to them.  But most teachers don’t have in-person meetings as nearly everything is over google meet, through google classroom, or through email. 

This leads to miscommunications and rocky relationships.  

“Hybrid learning can affect these relationships because there can be many miscommunications with the classwork,” Montero said. “This could be having a problem with google classroom which is the only way that we submit our out of class work. There have been times where I have experienced that my teachers have marked an assignment missing when I did them and turned them in.” 

Hybrid students aren’t the only ones feeling this way.  All remote students are feeling even worse.  They feel as though they have little to no relationship with most of their teachers.  Remote students even feel forgotten. 

“I do feel like the teachers are kind of forgetting about us,” said Lydia Flowers, a senior at Fairfield Warde. “There is a lot they do in school that we don’t get to see because we are at home.” 

Remote students don’t get to meet their teachers in person at all.  Their relationships are built through a computer screen.  So for hybrid students, they are fortunate enough to even get relationships with their teachers.  

“I feel my relationships with my teachers right now through hybrid learning, is way better than when we were fully online,” Ferhada said. “I can talk to my teachers in person when I need extra help which is the more effective way I learn. Overall, I like hybrid learning, it’s like the perfect in between.” 

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