Appreciating a Teacher’s Dedication
Transitioning from School to Home-School
Over these past few months, the pandemic forced a lot of people to start working differently than they were used to. People with office jobs had to pack up their offices and bring them home, and for me, that experience was interesting, to say the least. I’ve worked from a home office for several years now, but last fall, I decided to buckle down and finally get an office. I spent a while moving everything over there: all my clients’ files, my scanner, my computer, and even my desk. My wife and I were even ready to convert the office space at home into a small workout area for the family. Unfortunately, those plans fell through as soon as the pandemic started in full. Now I’m right back where I started. While I can continue working at home without worrying too much about that work-from-home transition, my wife, Shelby, had to adapt pretty drastically.
I watched as she found different programs and methods to use and did lesson planning with the teachers every week. Together, they set up a system where each teacher would teach two subjects through a video call or video recording for ALL the students in the grade — basically sharing the load and ensuring all the kids were learning the same stuff. Shelby, of course, chose science! But it didn’t end there. She made sure that her “homeroom” students met regularly so they could interact with their fellow classmates. Before they could begin this system, though, the teachers had to reach out to the parents and help them get set up as best as they could for the video calls and have access to the other files.
While I know Shelby and many other teachers across the country have struggled and worked hard to make this possible,
I think it’s also important to highlight the efforts and time of the parents. A large majority of parents had to suddenly become home-school teachers in a very short span of time. Through the stay-at-home orders and self-isolation guidelines, that transition must have been incredibly stressful. By the time this newsletter comes out, summer break will have officially started, which will give both parents and teachers a well-deserved break. Now is a great time to acknowledge and appreciate the people who have worked so hard these past few months and who will continue to work diligently in the months to come. I want to say thank you to my wife, all her fellow teachers, and the parents who do everything in their power for their students and kids.
Shelby is a kindergarten teacher, and like many teachers across the world, she’s had to find new ways to continue teaching her students for the last part of the school year, which was pretty hard for her. My wife is very much hands-on when it comes to teaching. When she’s in the classroom, she always prefers to get down to her students’ levels and interact with them as much as possible. One fun lesson she does that the kids love is when she dresses up as a scientist or as her “twin sister” to teach the class a certain subject. Shelby also enjoys taking her kids outside of the classroom. The school has a garden, and she’ll often take the class to the garden to teach them about ecology with all the bugs, dirt, water, and plants. She loves showing them life and how it all works together, making a difference in their lives. But for the last part of the school year, she had to learn different ways to teach her kids. The biggest hurdle was learning how to integrate technology in a way that was effective for her, the students, and the students’ parents. Under normal circumstances, kindergarten doesn’t have much, if any, remote work, but Shelby and many of her fellow kindergarten teachers had to undergo some quick learning curves to get things moving.
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