How are students adjusting to new normal?


Grayson Joslin, Editor

Extraordinary times call for extraordinary measures. Everyday life has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, from athletic events cancelled to social distancing. Students and teachers are now spending the final weeks of the 2019-2020 school year in their homes, completing their school work from their Chromebooks.

New Castle, after originally having a Monday and Wednesday eLearning schedule, adding Friday as an eLearning, mostly to allow Zoom calls to happen between students and teachers.

“I enjoy the ability to have my own schedule and take my time doing tasks,” Sophomore Lauren Taylor said.

“The work is easier to get done,” Senior KayLynn Marshall said.

“I can do the work when I see fit,” Sophomore Brody Goode said.

Trojans are not adjusting well to extended eLearning. When asked on a scale of 1-10 on how well they are adjusting, 17.8% of students responded with a 4, while 15.6% responded with an 8. 58% of students responded between a 1 and a 5, while 42% responded between a 6 and a 9. No one responded with a 10.

Trojans responded better when asked if they were adjusting to staying home. On a scale of 1-10, 27.8% of those surveyed responded with a 10, while 14.4% responded with a 5. 13.3% responded with a 8 and 12.2% responded with a 7. No one responded with a 1.

During these dark times, kindness is prevailing. Many students and teachers are spreading positive attitudes to their peers.

“I have sent out random messages of kindness to a lot of old friends or people I barely know to brighten their day!” Senior Emily Thurlow said.

“I helped out a baby bird that fell out of its nest,” Junior Gabe Cauthern said.

“Answering student questions and giving feedback when I see a student has almost got it and only needs a bit more coaxing,” said Teacher Colleen Taber”. “Also, I have sent notes of appreciation to students who have not been online and then suddenly appear, and also notes of concern to those who have not ever, or not for several weeks been on line.”

When not eLearning, students are spending their time doing their hobbies. Among the most popular responses from those surveyed were sleeping (43.3%), gaming (34.4%), social media (31.1%), watching TV (27.8%), and doing arts and crafts (21.1%).

Trojans are finding ways to laugh during these hard times.

“I tried to copy a Bob Ross video, but it looked like I threw the paintbrush at the canvas multiple times,” Sophomore Clay Joplin said.

“I was doing sight reading for choir, and the software we use allows you to redo your recordings as many times as you want,” Junior Lilly Guffey said. “When it was graded, I realized that it reports the number of times we attempted it to Mr. Hurst. I did it 37 times. In my report, he thanked me for testing out the software.”

During these trying times, students are missing the normality of school.

“I miss Mrs. Goggin and Mrs. Brown. Without having Mrs. Goggin as a teacher anymore, we don’t really have a way to speak. In school, we’d always say hi to each other in the hallways.I miss not seeing Mrs. Brown in the morning to lighten the mood all day, instead we have resorted to video calls two days a week,” Senior Alyssa Hicks said.

The Trojans who took the survey were also given the chance to shout someone out or talk about the experience of the ongoing situation.

“I miss Ava Stearns and Daniel Davis and just all my friends and some teachers.” – Freshman Bradley Henderson

“I miss everybody and can’t wait to see everyone again! :)” – Teacher Carly Lawson

“I miss my best friend Gen Davison!” – Freshman Oliva Schetgen

I miss my kiddos. I miss laughing and learning together. I even miss the eye rolls I’d get now and then and to occasional mumble about things when kids get upset! (Okay, so I don’t really miss those, but I do really miss the kids and my coworkers!) Teaching online is NOT the same as teaching face to face for several reasons, but not getting to interact face to face with my kids and co-workers has made me feel like a part of me is missing!” – Teacher Cassie Bell

“This is for Jade Clark. I miss you girl!!” – Junior Faith Wickes

“I miss Mr. Wesseler.” – Senior Zak Truitt

These are tough times we are all going through. Everyday life has been altered. Even though it is easy to, please do not become negative. Please try your best to smile everyday and be positive. This is not how we wanted to end the school year, but we are going to get through this together. We are going to end the year on a positive note. We are Trojans, and we are all in this together.