One of Orange Lutheran’s goals is to redefine the high school experience. Students are blessed to be offered many programs to ensure they have the best four years. This ranges from late start time, supportive teachers, daily chapels, and so much more. OLu also offers one of the best online systems, Orange Lutheran Online (OLO). OLO allows students to take a wide range of classes from Spanish, geometry, all four years of theology, and even some AP classes, all online. OLu’s health class is also exclusively taught through OLO. In order to take any other online classes, health must first be completed. This allows students to see if they enjoy taking online classes and have the right motivation to be successful in the OLO system. Here are a few tips and tricks to ensure students have the best experience in online classes.
Communication with teachers is a key component of online classes. As a result of not seeing teachers on a daily basis, students are unable to talk to them face to face. When attending in-person classes, teachers communicate schedules, assignments, as well as any concerns. Students are also able to ask questions and get any help, but online this is not as easy. The main form of communication is through email, phone calls, or texts. Emailing teachers is the only way they are able to know about questions on assignments, needed help, or when technology is not allowing assignments to be completed. Most teachers also offer their phone number so students can quickly text or call them. Online teachers’ primary source of communication is through email. Weekly emails are sent to update students of their grades and any comments on assignments. By checking emails daily and actively communicating with teachers it allows students and their teacher to stay up to date throughout the course.
Time management is another important concept to keep in mind while taking OLO classes. Unlike classes on Orange Lutheran campus, online courses have class and assignments due every day. This is because the class is on a fast track with a semester lasting for 8 weeks, while a semester is 16 weeks on campus. This means every single day a portion of time will be spent on completing that day’s assignment. It is important to set aside some time whether this means looking at the assignments for the week and planning a time to finish each assignment every day or completing the week’s work early. Planning ahead allows students to ensure there is enough time to finish the assignment without any unnecessary stress due to the midnight deadline.
Continuing on with time management, avoiding procrastination is important. All assignments must be turned in by midnight the day they are due. Often, students think they can procrastinate starting their assignments until late at night. There is essentially no benefit in waiting until the last minute to complete assignments. It can cause unnecessary anxiety and stress, causing the course work to be dreaded. When the work is finished last minute it can affect the quality of the assignments, ultimately opening the possibility for grades to negatively suffer. It is also hard to get out of the cycle of procrastination and once a lot of work builds up it can become very difficult to overcome. Applying time management allows online classes to not cause any unnecessary struggles.
Finally, engaging in the course allows for success. Two to three times a week daily questions, or DQs, are assigned. To supplement in-class participation, students have to respond to other students DQs twice a day, four times a week. Participating in DQs allows students to get excited about the content. It also offers an opportunity to interact with the other students in the online class. Participation is also an opportunity to get some easy points to boost a student’s grade.
Online courses can be very beneficial to a student’s as it gives the opportunity to have more free periods and a flexible schedule. OLO also offers some courses that are not offered on campus, expanding the possible courses to take during high school. Although online classes may seem more challenging than on-campus classes, with the right attitude and good habits OLO can benefit students and truly change the high school experience.
Photo Credits: Riyad Online