Thank You, Teachers!

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Before COVID-19, our last day of school was actually supposed to be my birthday, which is next Thursday. But because of the school shutdowns and the Indiana governor's parameters for completing the school year, the last day of school is actually going to be this Friday.

It's been a weird time for all of us, but through it all, our local teachers have been killing it.

I work for the school system as a paraprofessional; I had a couple of third grade boys who were my main focus, but I also provided assistance to the teachers I worked with as needed. The last day we were at school, we were informed on our lunch break that we would be out of school for the next two weeks because of coronavirus, and we would need to prepare accordingly. Basically, we had about three hours to make it work.

But you know what? It was a beautiful thing. Everyone came together to form a well-oiled machine to make distance learning possible. The teachers quickly out together lesson plans that could work from home, while I and the other aides started pitching in to make copies and put together packets. I'm pretty sure every kid in the school spent the afternoon watching movies in order for us to make it work, but we made it work.

But then two weeks became six weeks, and then six weeks became the rest of the school year. And through it all, the teachers I work with have been adjusting lesson plans, gathering materials, checking in with kids, helping parents, and doing their best to teach over the internet. Nolie's teacher has been going through packets with the kids via zoom calls, and handling the chaos that is a bevy of kindergarteners in a group video chat with grace and aplomb.

I think that as more parents have had to help their children learn from home, more people are realizing just how difficult being a teacher actually is. If you think one kid is difficult, multiply that by 25!

This isn't how anyone thought the school year would be ending. The kids are missing school, the teachers are missing the kids (and so are other staff members -- I miss my 3rd graders like crazy!), and we all wish this wasn't how things were ending.

But this is our reality right now.

So let's make the most of it, and remember to appreciate all that teachers have done to make this transition as smooth as possible for everyone involved.

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