"I recognized her right away!"
"He's so much taller than I expected!"
"Did you hear her story? It's so cool!"
These were some of the things Dwight Global Online School students shared when coming together for their first gathering on campus. While they had gotten to know one another over the last two trimesters in their online AP Literature class, they had yet to meet in person. Once they did, it was just like bringing old friends together!
This in-person connection is one of the distinguishing characteristics of Dwight Global, a private online school which offers residential and in-person experiences traditionally not available to online students. These unique opportunities enable our online students to forge deeper connections and become active members of the Dwight community. Where they take their classes is academic!
The AP Lit class is diverse indeed, including two ballet dancers, two champion tennis players, a student home after studying in Asia, and an adult student from Norway. They met with their teacher, Dr. Anthea Lake, to prepare for their upcoming AP exam. It was just as exciting for Dr. Lake as it was for her students to connect in person. She reports, "At Dwight Global, we personalize the education for every student based on their interests and talents. It was such a pleasure to meet my students, some of whom are training, performing, and competing when not engaged in their academics. I already knew they are enthusiastic learners, but when we sat down together to interact face to face, I was able to see their passions come to life. Their energy was contagious!"
Following the literature session, a few students working on the class newspaper project met with another study in LA via Skype to plan the next issue. And all enjoyed a fun, casual dinner together at the end of the day. They chatted and made plans to continue getting to know one another.
In fact, MacKenzie Clark, a sophomore at Dwight, suggested that connecting with your classmates – whether in person, by email, or through social media – is key to succeeding in an online class. "It's much easier to ask a question or make a comment you may be unsure about when you're comfortable with your classmates. The learning environment becomes much more productive and welcoming."
Another student, junior Isabelle Anderson, a ballet dancer whose schedule includes many hours each day at the barre, shared that being in a Dwight Global class has allowed her to improve her time management and study skills.
We learned a bit more about the individual talents and dreams of our Dwight Global students during their visit. And when we asked whether they would recommend an online class to others, we heard a resounding yes in unison!