Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Coronavirus Remote Education and Dancing 

Day Six March 25, 2020 WEDNESDAY

OMG! Can it get any more insane. Another 12 hours at my computer yesterday and I am so stressed out.

Between being suspicious of every interaction I have when I need to go out to get some essentials like food and wine, to dealing with six different online platforms for remote learning and interacting with my colleagues, to texting on my phone with friends and family and colleagues, etc… It is stressing me out, and I am really good at dealing with stress. Some people would say that I am at my best under stress, but this is really over the top.

First, the expectation of the Department of Education is unrealistic. There is no way we can give our students the same quality of education online from home, while we are dealing with our own families, dealing with our students' families, dealing with the inequality of access, language barriers, and learning differences, etc… We struggle with these issues when we are in our classroom under the best of conditions. The DOE needs to reassess its expectations and allow us to first, overcome the learning curve of going to online education, and second, trust that the majority of us are working our asses off to provide for the students that have been entrusted to us. I believe, in many ways, that learning is somewhat chaotic and messy and that we need to live in that chaos and mess for awhile to figure out how best to cope with it  and give our students what they need not what we think they should have.
And in the end we will come out the other side with the knowledge that we did our best and served our children admirably, but not when we have unrealistic overcomplicated expectations.

What did we do before we had internet? What would they expect of us? Would they want us to do home visits wearing hazmat suits? That is my rant for the day.

Now for the pluses. My students who sent me a video of themselves watching and following me on their computer to complete their assignment for the day. My student who sent me two pictures of himself doing poses from our class, the mom who finally figured out how to use the checklist I sent to track her child’s progress, mid-afternoon chats with my colleagues to destress, my students at St. Francis who were genuinely upset that we are meeting remotely and not able to dance together in one room. These things make my day and help me get through the rest of the bullshit that gets thrown at us by a system that has forgotten that it is people that we service, people that we are trying to progress forward, people that we are socially and emotionally responsible for and to. Our children are not commodities and neither are we.   

Oh I almost forgot: Self-Care First I took a break and created another exercise video from my humble abode. I tried to go to the roof to video, but alas, the roof was locked. I guess I could have gone through the alarmed door anyway. What's a little more chaos when you are so stressed out!!!!

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