ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – With schools canceled for the remainder of the academic year due to the coronavirus pandemic, many parents are wondering what steps they should take to make sure their students keep learning.There are online resources available however, not all families have access to them.
A first-grade teacher from Mountain View Elementary, Lisa Garcia decided to do something on her own. Crystal Garcia sits down with Lisa via Skype to discuss the packets she decided to make for her students and how her gesture has gone a long way.
Lisa has a class of 17 students and says she misses them immensely. Typically, her students start their day by selecting one of five ways to greet each other, allowing the students to connect with her and to see a fun side of her.
Now that students are home, Lisa has interacted with students through Zoom and Google Meet which has allowed her to continue her greetings in a different way. Lisa explains she tries to keep her young students laughing and upbeat during this time and even sent them jokes via Snapchat using filters.
“On April Fools I sent them jokes through one of the Snapchat filters where my voice changes just to get them laughing and making them feel good about being away from their friends and their teachers and then focusing on education but making sure that I think about their wellbeing first,” said Lisa.
After seeing news reports of other states and predicting the virus would also cancel schools in New Mexico, Lisa purchased additional supplies for her students that would allow them to still work. Lisa’s sisters helped pitch in for supplies and they put together packs containing workbooks, math packets, a coloring book, crayons, notebook paper, pencils, books and snacks.
Lisa’s husband then delivered the packs to each student’s house. Now that schools have been canceled for the remainder of the school year, Lisa is preparing to make another set of packs for her students with additional items including a puzzle of the United States.
Mountain View Elementary has created a Google site for parents to find their student’s teacher page, find educational resources and more. Next Monday, April 13, Albuquerque Public Schools will launch their Continuous Learning Plan for students.
APS has also teamed up with NMPBS to broadcast at-home learning for students called APS @HOME. The program is also available to view on APS’ YouTube channel.
“Teachers are working harder than ever to help the parents feel capable of doing this because it’s hard on everybody,” said Lisa.