Day 13 – Just…off

Daylight saving time, full moon, Friday the 13th, COVID-19… the week has been pretty weird, but to be honest, my students weren’t too terrible. Today, though… they were “off”. The district sent home “COVID packets” yesterday in anticipation of a shutdown. Teachers were on edge, too. For me, I think it’s the uncertainty of it all. The kids feel it, too. Figuring we’d be shut down, I didn’t do much in the way of “higher learning”. Instead, we did a fun math activity. We got lots of good books from the library. We watched a video about how germs get into our bodies, and we worked on the finishing touches of our class book, getting it ready to be sent out for publishing after spring break. We got in our IReady minutes. After all, I needed a little quiet time, too! In the afternoon, though, I gave each student a piece of construction paper. I told them to write their name on it, in large letters. We then circulated around the room writing positive things about every student on their paper. I put on some KidzBop, and off they went! I really enjoyed watching my students stand for a few moments at a classmate’s desk, and then say “Oh!” to themselves, and quickly write helpful or kind or funny or caring. When students made it back to their own seats, it got quiet as they read. Some students even came up to me, “Mrs. Van Horn, someone wrote that I’m always happy on mine!” “Mine says smart 10 times!” On it went for a few more minutes, with students sharing with each other the positive messages from their classmates. I think it was a good way to end the day. I hope when my students are at home over the next few weeks, they look at their paper, and smile, knowing how their classmates feel about them.

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