This edition of Student Spotlight shines on Porter-Gaud School’s Haley Prescott.

1. Tell me a bit about yourself?    

I am a senior attending Porter-Gaud High School. Outside of academics I tend to be a busy body and thoroughly enjoy partaking in my different hobbies. For example, I love coding so I am a part of the Computer Science Honor Society,  and I’m a service leader for service projects involving less fortunate adolescents. Furthermore, I am a part of the cheer team and choir at Porter, and outside of Porter I dance at the studio Peace Love HIpHop and dabble in the oil  and prisma color arts.

2. What made you decide to take Arabic 1 in MSON?

During the early stages of my High School career I discovered my fondness for different languages. When I began taking French in ninth grade I had fallen utterly in love with obtaining new knowledge of another culture that was just beyond my grasp. Learning languages is my way of traveling the world before I truly can, and when I’m able to visit new countries I would like to be able-to communicate with people globally. So, when the opportunity to learn Arabic presented itself I could not turn it down.

3. How is the class going so far? Highlights? Challenges?

So far Arabic 1 has been one of my favorite classes on my schedule. It has been extremely engaging and professor Niazi tends to make every new concept sound like a treat of knowledge. As of right now, we are learning about  the different symbols used for long and short vowel sounds, and that has proved itself a bit challenging, but nothing a little studying can’t handle.

4. At Porter-Gaud, you learned online last spring and are in hybrid classes now. How does the MSON experience compare to these other experiences?

In general starting hybrid and online learning was difficult. I am a student who thrives in the school building and likes to keep school separate from home, so it was challenging to merge the two. However, I’m glad that Porter-Gaud was my first hybrid/online learning experience because as a community we discovered what works for the students and teachers of the school. Therefore, when deciding to attend Arabic 1 over Zoom, I was not afraid or weary of the idea because I had time to find out how I most effectively learn over the computer.

5. A lot of teachers are teaching online or hybrid right now. What’s your one piece of advice from the student perspective?

Online learning has the potential to be engaging and helpful to the learning experience of many students. I find that many teachers just use their time on Zoom to meet with students or speak of homework and not the concepts that are being taught. If teachers could treat online and hybrid learning just like in person learning where we use class time for understanding concepts, perhaps more students would thrive online.