Wednesday, July 22, 2020

The Kids are Alright

By week two of the three-and-a-half-week summer school at the alternative education center, the group of 9th/10th graders has remained a steady class of two. But two is better than zero... 

The big issue the first week was getting them logged into the software. And then letting them know that getting 11% correct was not going to get them credit for completing the assignment. (Yes, they can do it over.) 

Then I finally got access to what they were completing online, and class got a whole lot more focused. See, I could actually see what they were doing, and I could actually help where they were stuck. Score!

But as the assignments aren't the sort of things they really need me hovering over them to do, the conversation goes a bit sideways. While Massey keeps his camera off, Ronan lets us see into his bedroom. (No, these are not their real names.) 

Week one, Ronan let us see his gaming setup. (He has a computer, Xbox, the works.) Week two, Ronan had to show off his new toy. 

It was a stereo receiver with an 8-track player and turntable. 

It was totally something my parents would have had in my childhood home. (Well, without the 8-track player. My parents never bought an 8-track player.) I knew exactly what it was when I saw it. 

Ronan had acquired it at a flea market along with a Rolling Stones album. He had the huge headphones that plugged into it. (Which he had half on while in class...) 

At least that's one plus of working from home. They're not tied to music from their phones. They can listen to actual vinyl records. Yay? 

It's kind of weird to see this stuff again, and both me and the instructional aide wondered at how our childhoods are cool again. (Did I mention the class has an aide? She's in the class meetings, too.) 

And Ronan is gaining a working knowledge of classic rock bands like Pink Floyd. So, yeah, the kids are all right...


  1. Oh, that's cool. I let all my left-behind eight track tapes go into the auction after my parents sold their home. Now I have hope someone is getting use out of them. :) Be well!

  2. Hi Liz ... fascinating that they're interested in our ancient technology! Rolling Stones and Pink Floyd ... brilliant - and pleased things are working out ... take care - Hilary

  3. I am puzzled as to why anyone would even want turntables or 8-track players. Where would you get records and tapes like that???

  4. My older sister's beau had a silver TransAm with 8-track cassette deck. I recall two of the selections: America & Led Zep IIII.

  5. Not sure if the same thing is happening in the US, but vinyl has made a huge comeback in Australia. There aren't many music stores left, but the ones that are all sell vinyl - in fact, I think we have one and that is all they sell. Apparently the quality of the sound from a vinyl is better. Go figure, lol.

  6. Vinyl records and logging on using software wowsers whatever next? Its a great boost for the students.

  7. Wow even a class aide!! This is really fun to read about with the adventures of online learning. Think you'll sub like this in the fall when the new school year begins again??


  8. So other then how the class has to be taught, nothing has changed?

  9. Initially, when I heard, I couldn't believe it. But here in Bengaluru too vinyl records have been making a comeback. There are places where one can get them.

    There was an article on it last year.


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