Back in January I was having dinner with a group of friends and the coronavirus came up. I didn’t feel like it was time to panic. It was something that needed watching.
Two weeks ago I was doing my pandemic prep at Costco. It’s amazing how fast things change.
On Thursday morning the coordinator of library services sent out a message saying we librarians should do all we can to get books in the hands of as many students as possible. It’s something we do every day, but there was more urgency. “See as many classes as you can today and tomorrow.” I had a feeling an announcement about closing was in the mail. It came Thursday evening; the district would close for two weeks effective Friday afternoon. WIth what seemed like the slightest bit of notice, teachers prepared work to send home with their students. The reading specialist in my school, a few of the tutors, a parent volunteer, the PE teacher, and I spent Friday distributing library books to all 400 students in the school–as many books as the kids could carry.
Most of the books given out were stored in the trailer as part of a past summer Reading Riders program. Some had recently been donated as an effort to enhance students’ home libraries (success!). Some students checked out library books for the two weeks off as well.
I buttoned up the library, took home some books and some work, and carried my plants out to my car. It felt weird. It still feels weird.
Things could change depending on how long we’re out, but as of now, we’re not doing distance learning. What does that look like in an elementary school anyway? And how does it get done when not everyone has access to reliable technology? Kids were given work to do and teachers are communicating with parents through Class Dojo (the parents who are connected to Class Dojo). Every few days, I’m posting a reading resource there too.
As of yesterday, our two week hiatus as morphed into a four week break (which includes our already scheduled spring break). Breaks are what I do best; there’s a lot do be done after all: house projects, knitting, reading, binge watching TV. This is different though. The uncertainty and worry takes some getting used to.
So here we are. I have ordered too many books from local bookstores who are offering free delivery to people who live within 10 miles of the stores.
I’m making a list of restaurants and breweries that I need to support once I can get out… assuming they still exist. I’m hoping my husband doesn’t lose his job like he did in the 2008 economic fiasco. When will I be able to visit my family again? When will I get to see the kids again? All of this on top of the obvious worries: I hope we all stay well.
Today was day one of homeschooling my 4th grader (LOL, I can’t do 4th grade math!). I made a schedule for our weekdays. I believe my son appreciates it more than I anticipated. He keeps referring to it. “What’s next on the schedule?” I keep referring to it. “What do we do after this?” For me, it’s necessary to be grounded in routine these days.
Stay healthy. Wash your hands. Don’t touch your face.