Teaching Through the Pandemic – Abigail Simms

pandemic on wooden letter tiles

So many emotions come with the topic of “Teaching through the pandemic.”  

Frustration fills me when I realize that, two years later, we are still teaching through a pandemic.  

Anxiety arises over the fact that, at any moment, we may have to pivot and adjust our learning model.  

Discouragement creeps in with knowing that our students haven’t had a “normal” school year in over two years.  

Instability develops switching from in-person learning to online learning and learning has been lost.  

 Feelings of failure hover as I sit behind my computer and watch students have meltdowns or struggle through problems while I am unable to provide the support that I could provide if we were in person.

people on yellow letter tiles on a blue backgroundqt

The biggest wins of teaching through the pandemic have been the relationships that have been formed with families and staff and the strength and resilience they have shown:  

I’ve seen a dad work day and night while still being invested so his kids can get the work done they need. 

 I’ve seen a mom spend hours studying to pass her GED and the joy and pride her son had at her graduation ceremony.  

I’ve seen students who have surpassed the goals that were set for the school year and the confidence they have gained.

I’ve seen the bonds that teachers and students have formed and the care they have for each other.  I remember our field day from the end of last year when a student went over and wiped the tears from the face of a teacher who had started crying, gave her a hug, and told her that everything would be alright. 

 It is in these moments that I am reminded that teaching is so much more than just what happens in the classroom. Teaching is about the relationships we form with students and families, about the challenges our students overcome, and the joy they feel when they achieve their goals.  

love on letter tiles on a wood background with a red heart

There are some days when the frustrations, anxieties, and discouragements of teaching in these times are almost too overwhelming.  

There are also days when former students stop by my room to share how they continue to grow and learn or when current students understand something for the first time and the joy that lights their entire face.  

It is in these moments that I find the strength to continue teaching through this pandemic.  

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