As online school continues, more teachers are requiring cameras to be on. However, many students have issues that affect being able to keep their cameras on.
There are many difficulties that interfere with keeping cameras on during Zoom, these include distracting surroundings, insecurities, social anxiety, being introverted, overthinking and having a messy house. These things all have a negative impact on the students.
These negative impacts include more anxiety, lack of communication skills, more distractions, no motivation to communicate with others and constant overthinking about others’ views on them.
Teachers and administrators require student’s cameras to be on to prevent cheating and to make sure students are working and not goofing off. Although these are valid reasons, how are the students responding to it?
“As much as I don’t want to have it on, it’s the best thing to do. I think it should be mandatory because we will do better if we are focused and the teacher always has an eye on us. It also makes us feel more like we are in class rather than staring at a computer,” sophomore Christian Teufel said.
Teufel explains that he feels it’s necessary to have cameras on in class in order for students to succeed. He feels that although it isn’t in his best interest to have his camera on, everyone will benefit from it in the long run.
Many extroverted students will find that this task is easy to do, but just because they are comfortable with it, doesn’t mean that other students aren’t negatively affected.
“I mean it’s well-known that teenagers might not be comfortable with their appearance, hence why they don’t want to show themselves on-screen. Not to mention that some students may even have social anxiety, which is even more crippling than typical adolescent insecurities,” freshman Kelin llamas said.
Llamas explains how debilitating it can be for a student to have to show themselves on-screen. For students with insecurities or social anxiety, this task is panic-inducing. Not all students can act out this task normally with no side effects.
Students may have a loss in academic performance due to the distraction or fear of being on camera. Instead of working like required, they are busy worrying about how people see them on Zoom and what they are thinking about them.
They may start to overthink t what people are thinking of them if people are even looking at them or talking about them. This may cause them to start panicking.
A variety of students also have messy households and distracting backgrounds. They may be embarrassed by this and or they may not want everybody else seeing into their daily lives.
We can’t expect everyone to have the same situation, especially during a pandemic. We must be inclusive of these affected students.
Despite there being good reasons to have cameras on, the school needs to cater to those who have these issues. Students who are impacted on a daily basis by these problems deserve to feel safe and comfortable in this new learning environment.
Since many students are uncomfortable with keeping their cameras on, it’ll be more difficult for them to learn while being in an uncomfortable learning space. Online school is still new to us, but we should at least try to make students feel more at ease instead of uncomfortable.
Overall, despite everyone’s different situations, we need to be more inclusive. We need to be made more aware of how other students feel, or else we won’t be able to make distance learning a comfortable space for each individual.