Hello everyone it’s Jennifer! It’s Back to school time again and Ms. Galenorn invited me to do a blog post.  This year is a bit different for everyone due to the pandemic. I know a lot of places, such as where I live, offered two option for school this year: online or in person.  No matter which option you’ve chosen I know it has been a major adjustment not just for us, the parents and students, but also the teachers and administration of the schools.

JenniferI personally chose to do the online option for my daughter due to my immune system issues. For us this meant not just adjustments to her school schedule and how she accesses her classes, but also for her special needs requirements. So I have to adjust to being mom, tutor, stand in for a para, and schedule keeper. I’m not going to lie it has been really rough this first couple of weeks, but we are getting there.

Our first week was such a mess with messed up schedules and glitches with the online class programs my school district is using.  I know that the teachers and admin team at my daughter’s school were doing the best that they can since this is totally new to them too. They are all getting the kinks worked out now and things are going more smoothly.  It was a mess at home too trying to figure out things that would work best for my daughter since we are in charge of her schedule here.

My daughter has autism so structure is crucial for her to succeed. So I first came up with a schedule that scheduled out every class with forty-five minutes per class. We quickly realized this was causing her anxiety, and triggering panic attacks and meltdowns, due to some issues with the modules and quizzes that one of the programs several of her classes use. So we went to a more general schedule of from 8am-12pm school work, then an hour for lunch, and then from 1pm-3:30pm back to doing any school work she had left for the day. This made a world of difference and she’s no longer rushing through her work, and we’ve had way less meltdowns. It has also been very helpful that her teachers reach out through email not only to her, and their other students, but to us the parents too. Overall we are getting a lot of support from not just her teachers, but her counselor and case worker too.

School suppliesHonestly if you are new to doing school online with your child, like I am, I hope that you are getting just as much support from your child’s school. I really do believe that it has to be a team effort of everyone involved for these kids to succeed. Also making sure that your child has a dedicated area to do their work without distractions is a key to making this work as well.

I don’t know enough about the in person option of how things are working in school to really comment on them. All I really know about that option is that the schools have to follow social distancing rules and masks are required.

No matter which option you chose for your child I wish you all a great, safe, and healthy school year!

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Back to School Time Pandemic Style
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4 thoughts on “Back to School Time Pandemic Style

  • 09/10/2020 at 2:49 pm
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    My 14yo male teen also has autism and when all Australian schools went into iso shutdown back in March, he found it very difficult to transition into home schooling. I have a law degree so I’m not a complete idiot but I’m also not a teacher and he didn’t see me as an adequate authority figure when it came to school work. Luckily the school worked real hard to stay in touch, work out glitches and were most forgiving on lateness of assignments etc but I really felt for kids (and their parents) in the outback who had little to no internet connectivity, now that’s isolation!

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    • 09/12/2020 at 6:37 am
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      I’m glad to hear your son’s school worked so hard to work with you. I can’t even imagine that isolation those families in the outback must have felt.

      Reply
  • 09/10/2020 at 2:09 pm
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    My kids started school August 10 for my 8th grader and Aug 17th for my 3rd grader. In the first 3 days we had to contact the principal in regards to issues. Then the 2nd week once again contacting the middle school principal. This was all due to lack of communication. Things have gotten much better this month than last. I put my kids on a schedule and it really helps. My daughter sets her alarm for 7am. She has time to wake up then at 7:20am she logs on to her computer and works until she needs a break. She has her google meet times where the teacher is live for sessions. My daughter usually is done by 1pm everyday. She has a lot of homework but she is in all advanced classes. She has some high school level courses in 8th grade. She has been managed pretty well. Her biggest thing is missing her friends. She hasn’t seen her friends since July. Her friends are choosing the traditional school option and we chose learn from home due to my severe asthma. So we had to stop seeing her friends because we could no longer keep the circle small. She has been upset but completely understands my health is more important. My son is loving being at home for school. His teacher happens to be a very good friend of ours and most of his friends are also learn from home and in his home school class. He doesn’t have to get dressed or rush in the mornings. He gets up before anyone else but has 2 hours before school starts to play and watch TV and eat breakfast. Then at 8:55am he sits in front of the computer for his 9am meet. They go for about 40-45min live with the teacher. Then they have a 45 min brain break in which he does the assignment for the first meet then has a break until the next class. This is the schedule thru out the day 45 min of google meet then assignment and brain break. He usually gets about 20min brain breaks after he finishes the assignment. He finishes about 2pm everyday with no homework. He loves that he doesn’t have to get dressed and he gets to sit in the office with his daddy while daddy works. My husband ends up working later since its hard to get things done with our 8 year old in the room. We had no other place to put him that we could watch him while he works and its no TV in the room for distraction. My daughter now has a desk in her room so she secludes herself in there for her google meets. This allows me to clean the house, do laundry, and go run errands like grocery shopping since my husband is home. Its been a hard change to get used too but we have adjusted well. I was a little worried with my husband working from home we are not the type of couple to be together 24/7 but after a few bumps in the beginning in March we all have adjusted well. I actually like having him home now. I can ask questions instead of calling. He can fix things right away when they arise like internet issues. We are making this work all to keep me healthy. I am hoping in January that the kids can return to school and my husband back to the office. I need some mommy time away. Plus I miss lunch dates with my husband and lunch dates with my friends. This stay at home mom is exhausted.

    Reply
    • 09/12/2020 at 6:44 am
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      Missing her friends is a big thing for my daughter too. Also because of my health issues she’s not been out (except to a dentist appointment) in town since March. We try to go out before bed to walk so that she’s not stuck in our apartment all the time. We chose to do it at night since it was cooler (I live in Texas so it gets hot in summer) and the majority of people in the apartment complex were in for the night. I’m glad that you and your family have found what works for you. I hope your kids have a good school year and that it is smoother than the first weeks.

      Reply

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