Written By Mahi Parui (Grade 8)
Albert Einstein, the most intelligent person to have walked on the earth quoted, “I fear the day when technology will surpass our human interaction. The world will have a generation of idiots.”
In today’s day and age, online classes are a rage. Many advertisements today provide crash courses that allow you to complete the whole learning-related course in two or max-to-max four months. But is that as good as the traditional classroom way of learning? Can a few hours of technology replace multiple hours of human interaction and student-teacher guidance?
Online education denies the opportunity for social interaction with classmates and teachers. A classroom provides lots of opportunities for competition among peers. This healthy, competitive learning cannot be replaced by any online learning sessions. The live debates and elocutions that take place in a classroom stimulate the brain and also increase lateral thinking.
The major hurdle is getting one’s doubts cleared. Asking a doubt and getting an explanation is much easier face-to-face rather than typing it out and asking it online. There may be more questions or counter questions that may take forever to solve in an online class. Questions asked in the classroom provide an immediate, real-time response. Getting one’s doubts cleared can help one build on concepts better and make learning more effective.
The increase in technology and mobile phones has lead to the death of human interaction. The classroom is one place which allows students to interact without technology. It allows us to stay on familiar grounds and socialise and make bonds with people. It allows us to make new friends with whom we can connect emotionally in such a way which is not possible over the internet. Human interaction, human ties and negotiation are considered key aspects of developing a successful business or career which is not possible virtually.
Online learning unnecessarily increases the screen time of children who would be much happier in the classroom. Scientific studies prove that the light emitted from the screens interferes with the sleep cycle in the brain and can lead to insomnia. Increased screen time can cause increased sedentary behaviour in children and teens, decreased metabolism and more distractions leading to lower well-being.
Though online learning may seem advantageous, it is not. Online classes create an informal, lazy and distracting environment which is not advised for effective learning. It also becomes difficult for the teachers to monitor and keep track of the students.
Weighing both, the advantages and disadvantages of both, we are losing more than gaining in online learning. We can only hope that the cold blue light does not replace a warm hug or a bright smile in the future.
Featured Image Courtesy – Center for Digital Education