Students claim Zoom cameras affect their learning

A computer displays the Zoom camera on the off setting.

Thomas Banner-Haimes

A computer displays the Zoom camera on the off setting.

To best replicate classrooms, many teachers have asked that the students at Carlmont High School turn their cameras on during Zoom classes. The administration has sent out a message saying that the students’ cameras should remain on.

Sophomore Winston Singh has views on the Zoom cameras that are overall pretty positive. Five of his seven classes require cameras to be on, and he believes they help him focus.

“I think I’m normally more productive when my camera is on. I’m more focused on my work and engaged in the class,” Singh said.

Freshman Alexander Menchtchikov said that although several teachers request students put their cameras on, only one of his teachers has been thoroughly strict about it.

“I think I focus better without my camera. The problem for me isn’t how I look on camera, it’s just knowing how many people could be looking at me at any given second,” Menchtchikov said.

While some students seem to favor cameras, and others seem to be against them, sophomore Natalie Homyk was in the middle.

“While I can see it may affect other students, I honestly don’t mind if I have my camera on or off. I think I’m about as productive with the camera as I am without it. I normally only put my camera on when it is required. Sometimes, I’ll look around, and if everyone else has their cameras on, I’ll put mine on as well,” Homyk said.

Many students find themselves agreeing that they only put their cameras on in classes that require it. Whether they believe cameras help them or not, most students will most likely not turn them on unless they are prompted to.

“Although putting my camera on helps me during class, I believe it could be distracting or stressful to other students,” Singh said.