Author Archives: JMcLeod

Together, Apart

Our school officially closed on March 20, 2020. We were very fortunate to have a mandated 10 day pause on educational duties in order to get some plans in place as we moved to remote learning. When we resumed, our Division further paused student learning, and allowed teachers to receive virtual training in the new online platforms we’d be using such as SeeSaw, Screencastify, and Google Meet. Then we had a few days to get things set up. Also during this time, we were to contact families by phone to see how they were doing and to find out what technology they were able to access from their home. I realized through this, that while the training and setting up the online tools was necessary for facilitating remote learning, connecting with our families was necessary for my heart and mind. Learning how to navigate new online resources, and sitting at the computer for long periods of time was not something that I was used to, and it was very hard for me. Talking with people who I’d formed connections with all year, was familiar and comforting. Even though I’ve adjusted to teaching from home, and all the sitting, and using the online programs that go along with it, I still prefer the times when I can connect with my students and their families. I run two Google Meet sessions each week and receive lots of videos and pictures through SeeSaw and email. These moments have brought me tears of joy, smiles, and helped me feel that we are all still connected, even though we have to stay apart.