Coronavirus and the classroom: What a teacher can do
The coronavirus has changed our easy-go lifestyle to an extremely restricted and tiresome one. Be it the way we go out, eat our food, learn in a class, or teach someone, it has indeed changed our lives a lot. In this pandemic, doctors, nurses, and policemen are corona warriors, but, to be honest, even teachers are corona warriors. Yes! You heard it right, teachers are also Corona warriors since they also take maximum efforts, going beyond limits, increasing their working capability so that students gain knowledge and make a brighter future.
Close coordination between the parents and teachers is the need of the hour for the better education of the students.
The Covid-19 pandemic has given popularity and rise to online coaching, which was earlier used for specialized studies for the common good.
Teachers, who have been in the field for long, do miss going to school, hearing the children making noise and spending time with the children.
Similarly, the parents would be tied up with the new responsibility of making the kids understand and make them sit for the online class.
So what do we do about this?
The best way is to make the children comfortable in the place they are.
The teachers can follow simple practices which will help in making the kids understand the current situation.
Safety first: Every day the idea of safety first can be imparted to young kids.
The need for the hour is to improve the personal hygiene of the student. We can have demo videos of safe practices like washing your hands regularly, covering your mouth while coughing or sneezing. Teachers can introduce a reward system and develop a track on how children are washing their hands frequently and timely. These practices if imbibed during the everyday class would make the kid aware of the practices and will teach the elders to follow the same.
Kids also need to understand the reasons behind the social distancing norms being set, and the best way is to inform them regularly about the importance of social distancing.
Parents should also be made a part of this exercise too so that the communication is clear from both the teachers as well as the parents.
Fitness: There are a lot of questions on the fitness and concern from the parents as the kids are sitting in front of the laptops and mobiles. This is a sure cause of concern.
The kids do not move about as they do in the schools and are generally not in the correct posture as required. The best way is to have a fitness session at the beginning of every class for 3 minutes to 5 minutes. The teachers can go through a fitness drill- like rubbing of the eyes, 1-minute meditation, jumping to make kids more active for the next class.
There should be a freak-out session for 10 minutes where the children can talk about what movies or serials or books they read every week and ask them to talk about their favourite movies or serials or books which they enjoy watching or reading. This should not be limited by topics but will be free for all.
Teachers can have fun sessions in the online classes by organizing quiz competitions online and testing their knowledge.
Teachers would also have to make the students comfortable by not asking pointed questions or pushing for information. If they feel any student is uncomfortable, possibly have a word with their parents for their welfare.
Teachers should also encourage students to strictly follow the rules; this practice can help children to develop a sense of responsibility on how to greet each other; how desks will be arranged and how physical distancing is followed during lunch breaks.
Teachers should also teach them the best practices of using the mobile and laptop, in particular the Internet. This is very crucial at this juncture for the kids to know what is good and what is bad.
The schools will be reopening soon. For the kids to readjust to the new atmosphere, they have to be trained well in advance to the change of the environment.
The primary and secondary children are aware of the school and how it goes; they are the toddlers who will have the most difficult times adjusting.
The teachers will have a very important role once the school reopens. The teachers have a responsibility to educate the students on the need for social distancing. The teachers have to take care of hygiene, social distancing and ensure the masks are in place. This is very important since school is the place where the kids will be socializing more with their friends.
The teachers, the Warriors, have been instrumental in shaping the child at a young age. They have been doing a great job in these challenging days and will require more in the coming days.