Difficulties of Virtual Learning ; Interview with Mr. Portera

An extraordinary physical education teacher of East Brunswick High School, Mr. Christian Portera, has a bit of a wrestle when it comes to remote learning. Mr. Portera wakes up, heading to Canvas, uploading the content needed to be learned for the day. Bear Hub did an interview with Mr. Portera about the struggles that come with virtual learning and his past experiences with technology.

Dina Elhaddad

Q: HOW MUCH MORE DIFFICULT IS TEACHING VIRTUALLY THAN IN PERSON?

A: It’s a 50/50 split. I am pretty good with technology, it’s definitely a lot more difficult. It would be boring to go through slides. It would be so much better in person because of the equipment, so difficult for people who don’t have the correct equipment for learning, such as basketball dribbling.

Q: HOW MUCH HAVE YOU ADAPTED TO REMOTE LEARNING, ESPECIALLY WITH SOMETHING SO PHYSICAL?

A: I have to come up with clever ways, such as give information through videos. It’s difficult without needed equipment, but videos + tools within home help a lot. We try to push students outside when there is good weather.

Q: I KNOW IT’S DIFFICULT KNOWING WHAT GOES ON IN THE HOMES OF YOUR STUDENTS, ESPECIALLY FOR SOMETHING SO PHYSICAL. DO YOU HAVE TRUST ISSUES WHEN IT COMES TO KNOWING WHETHER OR NOT YOUR STUDENTS DO THE ASSIGNED WORKOUTS?

A: It’s for sure challenging to trust that students do that work that I provide. It definitely tags along with having trust issues knowing some students may not be working on it. I try to help the students understand that they are trusted to complete the work and content given to them by the end of the lesson.

Q: IS THERE ANYTHING ELSE YOU’D LIKE TO ADD?

A: It’s definitely an abstract and unique way of teaching. It was challenging at first, but I eventually settled into a good rhythm within the learning. It shows what we’re capable of doing. It’s difficult to teach– especially physically; I miss the social aspect of it, I also miss talking to colleagues and having good relationships with students. Getting to know students is harder.

 

 

Mr. Portera manages to teach, even online, no matter the circumstances. He works hard everyday to make sure his students are staying fit, and keeping healthy, especially through times like this.