Updated: Sep 25, 2020
Yesterday we finally opened our Remote Learning Center. It wasn't in all the rooms possible, and we didn't have 20 students like we hoped when we first started talking about hosting students as a Remote Learning site, but it was just right for our first day. We had two families of students arrive between noon and 12:30 pm so we had a total of five students from kindergarten - middle school. Our volunteers were busy for the first couple of hours supervising students who were engaged in online class while also keeping students who were on a break or done their work occupied so they did not distract those still engaged in learning activities.
Everyone enjoyed at least some part of the lunch which the school system provided (let's face it, in a group of children, there will always be some who are not happy about the vegetable of the day or some other part of the menu... I know I was often that child, that's why my mom often packed PB&J for me).
Once everyone finished their work for the day we found some fun activities to do together. Ms. Linda helped the children with some origami crafts, I gave them some spare plain white masks and some markers to color them with, and of course there was time to get outside and run around and play in the fresh air.
We still have a few things to tweak, and there are more students who
want to come, but unfortunately we do not have enough volunteers to allow any more students into our program right now. It's difficult to find people who have time in their schedules and are healthy enough to take the risk to be in a building with children who are not great at following social distancing (it's so against their nature... and they're also not great at keeping their masks on their noses). And we are faced with the challenge of transportation - some of the students with the most need cannot get here to get help.
But the value of providing this space for these children to learn and grow is important, so we will keep showing up each week. Their education matters too much not to.