Thursday, March 26, 2020

Settling In

Tomorrow marks the end of our first two weeks of distance learning. Last week was full of awkward attempts, bumbles, and mishaps met with a flurry of questions. This week has been quieter, more subdued. There have been more comments of "done" than reports of a link not working or questions about class codes and signing in. Already, we seem to have settled in to this odd, new routine.

Not everyone is completing all the work I assign. Some students do it all while others seem to pick and choose what they want to complete. I don't hear enough from a good number of my students. I can only hope that they are so busy at home with their own kind of learning and have such great support that they are not in need of mine. There are a few that I outright worry about. I wonder what they're doing and how they will be impacted by the absence of stability that school provides.

The last two weeks have been exhausting and emotionally draining. To make matters worse, I was beginning to think that all my attempts to keep this group of kids connected was for naught. I sent out a questionnaire yesterday to see who was interested in meeting via Zoom, and I was disappointed that several chose "maybe" as their response. I had thought they would be eager to see and interact with their classmates once again. Maybe I was wrong. Maybe I was the only one affected by these strange circumstances and forced isolation.

But, of course, the show must go on, regardless of how the teacher feels. This morning I posted my daily read-aloud and greeting as I do every day. Because it was "Thoughtful Thursday," I asked students to fill the bucket of a classmate in the comments, something we normally do with paper "bucket fillers" in our classroom. I suggested as an alternative they could fill everyone's bucket at once by commenting on something they love or miss about our classroom. Slowly, the messages began to roll in.

"i miss you guys"
"I miss school a lot."
"I miss all of you guys. All of you guys are my friends!" 
 "Yeah, I miss our classroom and everything we used to do before this."
"i can't wate two see you all tomorrow" 
We may have settled into this strange, new world, but apparently we still miss the old one. Tomorrow morning we will fill our screens with the faces and personalities that used to fill our classroom. It won't be the same and it won't be nearly as good. But it will be good enough for now.


  1. It's really heart-breaking. All of it. The suddenness of the goodbyes, the ones we can't reach at home, the unknowing of when this all ends. I am with you. I am glad your students were able to share those feelings with you today.

  2. Enjoy your Zoom meeting tomorrow! I'm sure it will help everyone to see each other.
    "how they will be impacted by the absence of stability that school provides." This what I keep thinking about, too.


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