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Perceptive: Pandemic

What a crazy school year it has been, but we got through it! Education as we know it, has been irrevocably altered. Parents have experienced education like never before. Students have had to make adjustments and use technology for different purposes other than entertainment. There is certainly a sense of uncertainty as we begin our summer break. How will school look in the fall? The pandemic has changed our perspectives not only on education but on all facets of life. Will we ever return to normalcy? How can we use the start of 2020 to make positive changes?

This month marks the end of the school year for schools across the country. Everyone is pausing to take a collective breath. For me, as a parent and educator, it is a time of reflection. What are the lessons learned? How can we use the effects the pandemic had on our education system to grow as educators? One thing top of mind is we need to build stronger, consistent connections with our students’ families. As a parent, the need to have a strong relationship with my children’s teachers is more apparent now than ever before.

How can we take advantage of this extraordinary time? Summer break offers the perfect opportunity to have conversations with your children about emotion management. Reassure them that it is ok to feel anxious during times of uncertainty. Offer suggestions about how to manage anxiety. Model for your children by making a point to be more physically active to reduce stress and by making alternative plans. For instance, my family postponed our summer vacation due to the stay at home order. I explained the process (canceling resort reservations, contacting the airline to cancel plane tickets, rescheduling the rental car, cancellation fees, etc.) to my older children. These are valuable life lessons. Take advantage! In the meantime, be well.