An unusual fresh start


Photo by and used with the permission of Emma Harper

Emma Harper, freshman, gets ready for a day of e-learning at home. By staying at home, learning for some freshmen has been full of new obstacles to face.

The start of a distinctive school year has freshmen adapting to high school while having to be stuck at home for the first few months. 

“I think [e-learning] is making high school a lot more challenging and I don’t think I’m really getting a full picture of what it’s supposed to be like. Surely this will not really be the true freshman experience. But I think that we’re figuring it out and it’s just different like everything’s been different,” Emma Harper, freshman, said.

Due to the untested and unpredictable nature to this year’s start to the school year, one thing that new freshman Sienna Makhlouf has to figure out is how to make class more comfortable and to break down the social barriers.

“I definitely don’t participate as much in class as I would like. If there’s everybody [in the zoom call] paying attention [to me] it’s overwhelming,” Makhlouf said. 

Matthew Angelaccio, freshman, agrees. He says it’s hard to meet new people through online classes. 

“It’s more difficult because you don’t really get to see peoples’ personalities,” Angelaccio said. “You don’t get to know how they would actually be being in class with them. Everyone’s just muted during the zoom and then you’re thrust into a breakout room.” 

With the limited interaction online, numerous freshmen are having a hard time adapting at home to high school. Among them, many are having trouble communicating with their teachers. Makhlouf says that “[although] it’s not possible, it would be nice to just walk up to your teacher and ask a question without everyone hearing it.” 

Harper added on how adapting to high school “has been kind of stressful” at times due to the different schedule and several deadlines for assignments “making it complicated.”

While the start of the year has been very abnormal for many freshmen, some concluded the first few days have not been as unpleasant as anticipated.

“I think [the first week] has been pretty good so far,”  Harper said. “The teachers have all been really nice but it’s definitely an odd experience doing it over zoom.”