Students, teachers adjust to new after-school routine

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Photo by Maya Erd

Sophomore Josh Erd plays video games on Oct. 29 after school. Erd enjoys playing video games because it gives him a break from school work.

Students used to go straight to sports practices, engage in community service activities, go to religious classes and hang out with friends after school. This was a time to be involved, release stress from school and just have fun. However, the time after school is different now: students are still in their “school” environment even after the school day is over.

Students have taken up different activities to keep busy after school and to try to keep their routine consistent. A popular activity is walking. It is recommended that students go for walks after school to break up their workload and get outside after staring at a screen all day. “Physical activity is an important part of the school day because it helps kids mentally focus and concentrate, which is even more important with families social distancing and kids doing all of their classwork online,” according to NBC16.

I also don’t have cross country practice after school anymore, so it is nice to try to imitate my old routine as much as possible.”

— Mariel McInnes

Students find it easier to focus on their homework after school if they do a different activity than the one they’ve been doing all day. “I enjoy taking walks after school because I can get fresh air. I am never ready to do my homework because my head hurts from looking at a screen all day. I also don’t have cross country practice after school anymore, so it is nice to try to imitate my old routine as much as possible,” senior Mariel McInnes said.

Other students find it calming to participate in art-related activities. Instead of getting their heart rates up and sweating outside, they prefer a calming activity that doesn’t associate with school. This includes painting on canvases, listening to music, sitting outside and drawing.

In addition to clearing the mind and engaging in students’ passions, students have jobs they attend after school. “I usually work twice a week, and I enjoy getting out of the house. It can be difficult to balance work with homework, but with the virtual school, it’s easier,” junior Emily Levine said.

Others find it enjoyable to finish as much homework as possible after school because they feel as though they are still in “school mode” once the day lets out. They work through as much as they can after school in hopes of getting to bed early.

Students may wonder what teachers are doing with this time. Do they get right to grading after school, or do they take breaks too? “After school, I answer emails, plan lessons, and do some grading before spending time with my family. This isn’t different than in-person learning except now I’m not spending time on a commute,” English teacher and yearbook adviser Melanie Moomau said.