We’re living more of our lives on the internet and in front of screens than ever before. Every day, mobile technology more closely resembles magic: It has helped us become more connected and efficient, and opened up worlds that were once only visible in our imaginations. Classrooms have been impacted by technology just as much as other parts of the world, which can be exciting territory for educators.
Happy Teacher Appreciation Week! (Though a week feels so insufficient.) Now more than ever, parents across the country have appreciation for everything teachers do for their children. Teachers are selflessly motivated to care for, influence, and inspire development in children. Every day, as we interact with members of our community, find comfort in books, and witness scientific and engineering feats, we see the positive impact of teachers.
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, working from home full-time wasn’t an adjustment for me; I’ve been doing that for years. However, working from home full-time with a two-year-old (Jack) and four-year-old (Frankie) at home was uncharted territory for me. It’s a balancing act that millions of parents are suddenly trying to master quickly and with a little bit of grace, if we’re lucky!
Allow me to set the scene: I am propped on a stepstool in my daughter Lucy’s bathroom. I’m balancing my laptop on my knees as Lucy enjoys her 2nd popsicle (sugar-free = lunch?), plays, and splashes! I already feel like this a “mom win” because the popsicle in the bath makes for an almost-no-mess, very little stickiness situation! It is 11:41 AM, and I am on a conference call with my team, and because we are all working from home, our cameras are on as we connect virtually.
August is one of my favorite months of the year. Here in the South, it signals that fall is on its way and that it’s time for our kiddos to go back to school. My daughter, Nora, turned three in April and is going into her second year of preschool. Although our local school district has decided to host school virtually for the first nine weeks, my daughter’s school will be returning to in-person instruction.
Typically this time of year, we as parents would be hitting stores looking for school supplies, back-to-school clothes, and new lunch boxes. Instead, many of us are trying to figure out how to manage our daily lives with the added pressures of online learning and young children in the home.
First Days of School… One of my earliest memories revolves around my first day of kindergarten. Living outside of Boston, our house was right next to the elementary school. My mom took my hand in hers, and we walked together towards the beginning of my academic career. Donning a new yellow dress, tennis shoes, pigtails, and a yarn lanyard with my name printed in big letters, I was ready to go; in hindsight, I am certain my mom and I shared similar emotions: uncertainty, excitement, and anticipation!
Hatch has received requests from our social media community for recommended child-friendly resources to help expand cultural literacy and provide some historical context around current events. Hatch’s Creative Diversity line was developed to provide learning resources that celebrate and honor all cultures.
In early April, after about two weeks working from home, I read an article about the psychological benefits of feeling and expressing gratitude on a daily basis. If you’re like me, you get caught up in the rush of the day and, more often than not, don’t set aside the time for gratitude. That day in April, I decided to grab a notebook and write three things for which I was grateful and pledged to repeat the practice daily. At first, the list was trite and generally repetitive: family, health, etc. However, as I participated longer, the list became deeply personal. It also became more external; I found myself expressing gratitude more often.