I have been blessed with 22 curious, eager, and hardworking Kindergartners. Our school is a Title I magnet school in an urban setting where over 60 percent of our students receive free or reduced-price lunch. My students come from diverse backgrounds, economic situations, and family dynamics. Half of my class come from homes where English is not their first language, and many are not exposed to the English language outside of the school setting.
Over a month ago school was closed abruptly and my students are now isolated at home.
Although some of them have access to devices or share a device with siblings, others have no device to access distance learning lessons or materials to be used for learning at home. During these uncertain times, many of my students and their families are struggling to have enough food and money, access online learning opportunities, and are possibly caring for sick family members.
When our district announced that we would be closing for two weeks due to COVID-19, many teachers, including myself, only grabbed what we thought we would need for two weeks. We sent our students home with work packets and some books. Then our governor extended our school closure by 2 extra weeks, followed by an even longer closure. I found myself with nothing at home that could be used to teach virtually, but even more importantly, with no way to show my students that I care about them and was thinking about them and their education.
I would like for my kindergartners to know that even though we are far apart physically, that they are on my mind and in my heart everyday.
Making sure that their social emotional state is healthy is my upmost important goal throughout distance learning. With the requested items from this project, I would like to put together care packages for my students that will put a smile on their faces. I am requesting journals for my students to practice their writing and reading responses. Crayons and pencils so that they are able to complete their distance learning assignments. The magnetic counting chips and dice would be included to help them work on their math assignments which often consist of hands on learning games. I am also requesting sunglasses for students to use as we do in our classroom when we are being "star readers." All of these items would be included in colorful tote bags along with paw print stickers, stamps, puzzles and rubber bracelets. The red paper would be used to create cards for each individual student with a special note from me.
Thank you for considering our long distance learning project.
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