Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, much has changed across the globe. But one thing has remained the same: teaching and learning need to continue for our students.
Since March of 2020, Mariemont City Schools has faced a daunting challenge: how do we keep all students, staff and the community safe and healthy while also providing the educational continuity needed to advance our learners? It is certainly not an easy task but the Mariemont City Schools teachers have been up for the challenge.
In the October issue of The Experience: The official newsmagazine of Mariemont City Schools, the district features seven teachers from all four school buildings. They describe “teaching through a pandemic” in their own words and share what has changed about teaching this year, what is different in their own classrooms and what they have learned since March.
Below, read the experience of Mariemont Elementary math and science teacher Mr. Jeremy Prater.
I teach fifth grade math and science, both in person and Online Warriors
Q: How has teaching changed since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic?
A: Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have needed to reset our baseline for teaching. Typical business as we have usually done is unrealistic. It has really challenged us to take risks and be creative with the understanding that with trials will come errors. While this is uneasy for many to come to grasps with, it is a great opportunity for us as professionals to model to all ages of students what it is like to be challenged outside of comfort zones and grow.
Q: How is teaching different for you specifically during the pandemic?
A: Some of the specific changes that I’ve made are creating notes that are more interactive. I want to allow students an authentic learning experience and have their discussions drive their learning. Still, providing opportunities for inquiry and problem solving takes a bit more time and the interactive notes that drop and drag provide a good review and maximize our time to learn.
Q: What is one thing you have learned from teaching during a pandemic?
A: Students still need to be challenged. They still need support. We need to find ways for them to work collaboratively and be proud of their work. Difficult doesn’t mean impossible. Despite the pandemic learning experience, students will rise to the expectations we put before them because they are resilient.