NORTHWEST ARKANSAS (KNWA/KFTA) — The secretary of education said in Governor Asa Hutchinson‘s coronavirus press conference on Monday (April 6) you can’t replicate the school experience at home — so what does this mean for kids’ education and social development during COVID-19?
This is not homeschooling or even online teaching, this is crisis teaching.BONNIE KING, UA CLINICAL INSTRUCTOR FOR CHILDHOOD EDUCATION
University of Arkansas Clinical Instructor for Childhood Education Bonnie King said the shutdown of on-site instruction at schools across the Natural State has been an extremely stressful experience for everyone — especially the students.
“When we’re having trauma in a social and emotional way, we’re not able to learn, she said.
King said during this time, the focus doesn’t need to be hitting the books — but rather, keeping a connection.
“For our students to feel supported emotionally is going to be really important,” she said.
King said right now parents and teachers need to meet students at their social and emotional needs, in order for them to eventually be able to return to learning in an academic setting.
“What we know about kids is that they are highly resilient,” she said.
Stacy Richey, an English teacher at Heritage High School, agrees.
“When I have those ZOOM meetings with them, I’ll be honest with you, there are very few times that we truly talk about English that much,” Richey said with a laugh. “They are really spent connecting.”
She said it’s important right now to make sure kids maintain the social engagement they rely on at school.
“I’ve met their puppies, their kittens,” she said. “I’ve met moms, I’ve met grandparents.”
Those have been the moments for those kids who really miss that interaction to still get that in some capacity.STACY RICHEY, HERITAGE HIGH SCHOOL ENGLISH TEACHER
It’s still unknown how long until students will be able to return to a physical building — but when they do, there’s hope for a brighter future.
“[This} is an opportunity to look at how we teach and how we are going to have to change some things in the classroom when we come back,” King said.
I miss them so much, I miss the interaction, I can’t wait to see them again.STACY RICHEY, HERITAGE HIGH SCHOOL ENGLISH TEACHER
To further this topic, King is co-presenting a free ZOOM webinar — “Building Emotional Resilience” — with a local pediatrician on Tuesday, April 14.
It will discuss how our bodies respond to trauma and how to build emotional resilience.
It’s from 3 p.m – 4 p.m.
To RSVP email: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.