Holding Tight

 

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7th Grade Wing, Jamesville Dewitt Middle School. March 17, 2020

An envelope for every student.  A  packet from every teacher for each envelope.  Every teacher prepared two weeks of daily plans, along with supplemental materials.  Just under a thousand students.  Just under a thousand envelopes ready to be picked up or delivered.  A middle school transformed into a strange version of a factory.

 

A new world?  Hopefully not.  Just a brief glimpse into a world that I hope will never come to pass.  I write that as I sit here, wondering how to use the technology that most (but not all) of my students can access.  How to balance the worksheet hell that lies inside those envelopes?  The worksheets that are the outward manifestation of a pedagogy that I have successfully resisted.  Until now. Now the only consistent communication I have with my students is through the worksheets in those envelopes.

It is a thin, thin thread that connects us now.

8 thoughts on “Holding Tight

  1. Wow, it is so wild to read such familiar posts from teacher slicers. We are all trying to figure out how to help our students in these new and rapidly changing landscape. Wishing you well and hoping that you and your students all stay safe.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This piece shows your grief in the emptiness of the halls in the picture, to our profession being reduced to a thousand envelopes. This thread that connects you to students will suffice for now. Thank you for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. That sounds a lot like my school.:):):):):) I AGREE WHOLEHEARTEDLY with everything you wrote. I am still in shock. It is not distance learning. It is distance busy work. I have learned a lesson though – I will never let this happen again. I know that you will fight on my side if we have to do battle over something like this again. Honestly, the best thing we could have done is open one Google document in the Google Classroom and write back and forth with the students throughout our time away. Can you imagine how powerful that would have been?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. This says so much: “The worksheets that are the outward manifestation of a pedagogy that I have successfully resisted.” I am afraid that many teachers will reduce to this, and I know that for many, it is out of their hands. We are doing the best we can. Hopefully, you can find other ways to get your students learning without the packets.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. The idea of everything we do being reduced to worksheets breaks my heart – and I can see that it breaks yours, too. It is, indeed, a thin thread that connects us, but it is a connection nonetheless. Let us make the most of it in these crazy times. Good luck!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I love your ending: “Now the only consistent communication I have with my students is through the worksheets in those envelopes./It is a thin, thin thread that connects us now.” I’m imagining that you’ll figure out ways to strengthen the thread, but it does all feel so challenging for now.

    Liked by 1 person

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