If I were in your shoes…by Cate Hill

Dear Teachers,

If I were in your shoes…first, I would take three deep breaths.  This is all new and there are so many things to address, it’s worth the time it takes to do some prioritizing.  Thinking of students and families, the first thing I would want to do is reach out and connect.  Until I understand what the challenges in each household are, any plan that I might make is bound to miss the target, for at least some families.

I would definitely start small…once I have established ways to connect and communicate with students and families, I would want to offer things to do that don’t require a huge amount of parent involvement.  Thinking about what it would have looked like in my own household when my kids were young (and I would still have been working full time), I would want to be given some activities that my kids could do together, that would be fun, engaging and challenging at their different levels.  I think I would have been concerned about screen time for my own kids, so as a teacher I would want to make sure that I had plenty of activities that students could do alone or with siblings that would not involve being on a device all day.

On the other hand, I would want to be introducing my students to some technology-based apps and programs that they could use to learn, and to do partner or small group projects with their classmates.  I know that all of us will miss the daily interactions with our friends (and colleagues too!) so providing opportunities to interact online is going to be important.
One last thing I would want to share with my students is how much I am learning as we go down this road; I would want them to know we are all in this together!