Today I documented the first day of distance learning for my kindergartener. My wife and I know each family has a different challenge when it comes to distance learning - many who have it much harder than we do.
Our challenge is having two toddlers with our kindergartener, which is why my wife set up a corner in our kitchen to provide a special place for her to be out of the way. We're hoping it also allows her to focus, but be close enough to mom for help.
We started the day like any other first day of school, getting our 5-year-old, Cozette picture-ready for a brand new chapter.
"I'm nervous but a little bit excited," she said.
About five minutes before the start of school, we turned the school-issued Chromebook on and had her get situated. Then came the moment of truth. When school officially started, the Zoom link wasn't working on the classroom portal, which forced us to switch to a backup link that was e-mailed the night before.
While my wife worked to get that up, I worked at calming down our 1-year-old. After a bit of a scramble, it was up and running and our kindergartener was officially in class!
The first hour and 15 minutes on Zoom included welcome songs, morning worksheets, a story and an art activity. Then the kids logged off of Zoom and transitioned to seesaw for 30 minutes, where the teacher has pre-recorded lessons for individualized learning. Then there's time built in for a 30 minute recess. After recess, it was back to Zoom for one last hour or so of live learning and participation.
While she loved her first day of school, my daughter says she misses being at school.
"Because it's like more funner, because you get to play on the playground and here you don't get to," she said.
Now that we know what to expect, tomorrow should be easier, but my wife will be with all the kids by herself, so that will be the difference. We send a special thank you to all the teachers out there who are giving it their all to keep their classes engaged!
ABC7 reporter Tony Cabrera documents daughter's first day of distance learning
Many parents are trying to help their kids navigate a new world of online learning, including ABC7 reporter Tony Cabrera.