“Being able to tailor my schooling to what helps me learn the material the best has given me success in all of my high school classes and allowed me to pursue two of my greatest passions: violin and basketball.”
– Lauren French
Many traditional adults hold the belief that online or blended courses are “just for the technically gifted” or “for the children who can’t function in a ‘normal’ learning environment.” When I tell people that I am dual enrolled—enrolled part-time in a traditional brick-and-mortar school and enrolled part-time in an online virtual school—they look at me with questioning eyes. “Why do that to yourself?” they ask, and I try to convey the numerous opportunities that come with having some classes online and some taught in person.
I have never been without online classes; I grew up enrolled in Idaho Virtual Academy, and I know and fully appreciate the benefits of the program. I have always found success easily in English and Reading courses, but Math has always taken me a longer time to comprehend. Taking Math online allowed me to take the time I have needed to fully learn the material and get good grades in a class I struggle with. By taking subjects such as Government, Economics, and AP U.S. History online, I have been able to move more quickly through subjects that are easier for me, and that would not have been possible in a classroom setting. Lab classes, such as Anatomy and Physiology, I have enjoyed taking in a classroom.
My online classes provide the flexibility that allows me to thrive in my before- and after-school activities. I have been able to spend 1-2 hours before school every week preparing for festivals and college auditions with my private violin teacher while still seizing the opportunity to play after-school sports; this has given my life balance. I have also been able to take advantage of dual credit and AP classes because of my blended learning (program).