Can E-Learning Replicate the Classroom?

Student success story – connections improve school performance. 

Last spring, about eight weeks into quarantine and e-learning, I received a phone call from a parent of a failing student. This poor teen literally had a 40% in his English class, and by the time the mom and I talked, there were only about four weeks left in the semester. 

The mom explained that her son was fairly smart by typical school standards. He loved to read, enjoyed his English class, and liked his teacher. Sure, he admitted to difficulty with writing, but, up until e-learning and quarantine, he performed well above average, many times even earning “A” grades on his essays, quizzes, and projects. 

This student is a fairly good reader, enjoys the class, and even likes the teacher. What could be the reason his grades have plummeted? What has happened over quarantine if he is showing up to his Zoom classes and receiving the same assignments as the rest of the year when he attended classes in person? 

Hmmmmm, when he attended class in person, when he attended class in person… 

That’s it! His physical space directly affects his classroom performance! 

After talking to her son for a couple of minutes and asking him to describe his situation in English class, the evidence was clear: he felt a total disconnect from his class, his teachers, and the course material.

The e-learning teaching methodology failed to connect the student to the course. The student was failing English. The student and his mom felt terrible, especially because he loved the class and adored his teacher. There were four weeks left in the semester to complete a large handful of complicated assignments or he would receive an F on his transcript and not graduate from high school.

Once I understood the root cause of this kind, smart student’s problem, no connection to the class, I knew I could help improve his situation if he was willing and committed. 

I knew that even though he and I would meet via Zoom, this student needed to feel closer to everything about the course work, the novel, the essay questions, and how his life aligned with the major themes, conflicts, and author’s message. 

Does Your Teen Need Help?

Last week, we shared the findings of a recent Stanford study that found that e-learning is causing major loss in students’ learning. From just the 2019-2020 semester, online learning resulted in almost an entire year loss in reading and math for students. 

This deficit is especially crucial for high school students who rely on their reading and English classes to prepare for writing their college application essays and to build a strong foundation for college success.

If we can help our children better connect cognitively and emotionally to not only the course material, but the class as a whole, including the teachers, we will see better results from the fast shift to virtual learning. 

Total Writing Enrichment provides your student the one on one support and supplemental instruction that is necessary for e-learning success and college application essay success. 

Don’t let your teen’s chances of college admission suffer! Set up a quick call with Amy here to explore options for your high schooler and check out our e-learning toolkit to help your teen succeed.  

If you’re looking for even more tips and tricks for college application essays and e-learning visit our Facebook, Instagram, or LinkedIn for more content including videos and more in-depth looks at tips from our blog posts.

All my best,


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