WALDOBORO — With school closures across the state amid the COVID-19 pandemic, teachers and students alike are having to adjust to the unfamiliarity. Teachers at the Miller School, in Waldoboro, serving approximately students in pre-kindergarten through sixth grade, have been working this week to sprinkle a dose of familiarity into these unfamiliar times.
Each day, different teachers at the school are recording themselves reading stories aloud, or conducting science experiments, and are uploading them to their Facebook pages, with the videos later being shared to the school’s own Facebook page.
The sessions have received rave reviews from parents and students alike. Some parents have commented their students loved the virtual sessions, and particularly liked seeing a familiar face amid unfamiliar times.
Virtual reading sessions are imperative for several reasons, according to Miller School kindergarten teacher Mindy Kebles.
“Read alouds are an evidence based activity that helps students build literacy foundational skills, introduces new vocabulary words, and allows students to develop a love for reading that they will hopefully carry with them beyond the classroom walls,” she said.
Though the campus is closed amid the pandemic, the staff’s love for teaching, learning and their students have not changed, Kebles said.
“We are encouraged to record ourselves reading to our students so our recordings can be shared on our school Facebook's page,” she stated. “I will continue to do my part in helping to ensure students feel connected to their school and teachers.”
Recording themselves for their students is quite the unfamiliar experience, as Kebels acknowledged.
“It does feel silly to read to a camera, but I would do just about anything for my students,” she admitted.
Despite the unfamiliarity and silliness one may feel, holding virtual reading sessions are totally worth it for the teachers at Miller School.
“Books are magical, and my biggest hope for this school closure is that all students read or have someone read to them for at least 20 minutes a day,” Kebles said.
Reach George Harvey at: firstname.lastname@example.org.