Being a High School Sophomore During the Pandemic

By Lila Troum

Saying that our lives have changed would be an understatement. Over the course of the past year, students around the country have been facing the same challenge that COVID proposes: how to deal with virtual/hybrid learning. As a sophomore, I look around at my fellow classmates, the upperclassmen, the freshmen, and I can’t help but think: I’m in somewhat of a fortunate position. 

Before I start, I’d like to make it clear that this is only how this year is going for me. I can’t speak for my class; this is solely my experience. I’ve found that virtual learning has not been too difficult. I’m in the spot where I’ve adjusted to high school pace learning, but I’m not too far in where I have to start worrying about college. I can’t speak for any other sophomore, but in my case I’ve found the shift from in-school to online, in terms of work, to not be so bad. The shift between the work I received as a freshman and the work I’m currently receiving as a sophomore is not nonexistent, but it isn’t as significant as I initially thought. Though, the factors of online learning probably do contribute to that quite a bit, which I can’t complain about. 

However, of course, there are some pretty hard-hitting downsides that’ll probably impact me quite a bit in my following years. In this current situation, I’m lucky to be able to balance my time between homework and other activities, but I’m worried about how the “calmness” of online learning could potentially lead to calamity in my upperclassmen years. Adjusting to this pace may lead to me overestimating what I’m really capable of in an in-school environment, especially in my junior and senior years. I haven’t taken an in-school test, or have been fully engaged in school learning in almost a year, so I don’t think I realize how different my home and school environments really are. And, like all grades, I really do miss seeing my friends everyday. 

All in all, I don’t think any of us are happy about this school year and what it’s been in terms of setting, but I’m grateful that it’s taking place during my sophomore year, and like everyone, I hope we can all return to an in-school environment ASAP!  

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