As I wrote on Saturday, we drove through a thunderstorm and avoided a much stronger storm that was producing tornadoes.
Today, we had a snow day. And out of the blue. No school.
Welcome to Iowa.
However, a friend messaged me that she was having flashbacks to two years ago. It was right about this time two years ago that everything was shut down for Covid. I was not at home when the call came two years ago and I wasn’t at home today. Now, we were drinking with my daughter, her boyfriend and his parents when that first call came. Not today. I was buying cat food and chicken food. 🙂
So, we’ve got a virtual day. Yippee! When the text came, I started getting things up online. It took us a couple of weeks to figure all that out during Covid. Where were we posting assignments? What kind of videos were we using? How would we communicate with students? It’s amazing how quickly it all came together and how we did it. Do I want to go back? Oh hell no. Am I proud of what our district did to create learning opportunities for our students? Absolutely!
Those sixth graders asked TONS of questions. “Do we have to do this?” “Do we have to do that?” I’d guess that 50% of work got done. For some students, I didn’t “see” (in video conferences) or hear from them for pretty much the rest of the year. Some kids, I saw every week, I saw their work and they thrived during our Covid time.
It’s amazing, this year’s sixth graders students are very similar to the students we had two years ago. Even with some Covid practice, I saw many of the same issues.
I spent a ton of time today writing, “What did the directions say,” in many, MANY student emails. I had half my students not log into our Google Classroom page, even though I emailed everyone, sent messages on Google Classroom, AND our district sent messages home last week about what would happen. I’m not sure how to celebrate those who got done, I need to think of something. For all the “oh we are a 1 to 1 school” it’s amazing to me just how little work gets done outside of school. No, I don’t want to get into the whole homework debate, but dang, you can read 20 minutes. You can spend a little time taking care of the online work you have.
Sorry about that rant. For the money we spend on technology, I expect more than Netflix and “Unblocked games”. Ugh.
And yes, I also know there is a digital divide, one of the reasons I really don’t assign homework, but still. Students are capable, yet, they don’t believe they are, which is why work doesn’t get done.
Each student who turned work in got a note from me, telling them how much I did appreciate their effort today. And I do. They put in their time today for me and need to be recognized!
Thankfully, it’s March 8th tomorrow and it will be 42 degrees, and this snow will melt away.
Thankfully, we don’t have to teach online classes.
The only problem: it’s supposed to snow on Thursday. Mesasureable snow. Snow that could screw up another day.