County Teachers Reflect on Remote Learning Experience

Published: Jan. 29, 2021 at 8:20 PM EST
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PRESQUE ISLE, Maine (WAGM) - While some school districts in the county have returned to fully in person learning, some are still working through remote instruction.

With the rise in COVID-19 cases throughout the county, some classrooms remain empty as students learn remotely. For teachers, remote learning has been a challenge.

“I teach kindergarten, so I deal with the youngest learners and those learners are dependent on an adult,” Christine Skinner said. “And we live in a real world and the adults in their life have to work. After those adults put in a long day… then they’re expected to educate their children and it’s just hard all around.

“At the high school level you know, they are older students, young adults,” Ashley Philbrook said. “For them really learning how to get their own schedule going to work independently at home when we’re not face to face at that point in time can be really difficult.”

“It’s a juggling act for all of us,” Bill Guerrette said. “Parents, students, teachers as far as… to make this work and it’s not ideal, but I think that we’re doing the best that we can. All of the groups that are involved.”

Doing the best they can by going the extra mile. These three teachers say they’ve implemented ways to combat the challenges.

“Trying as much as possible to make it as seamless as I can,” Philbrook adds. “When we’re all out remote, just trying to make sure that I’m available whenever they need help… it’s definitely been a challenge.”

“Trying to find time to google meet when the parents can get them on,” Skinner explains. “That could be, you know, an after-supper time… you know something that will work for the parents to get them on. A lot of it is just to talk and to see their friends. If you offer a google meet and they can just check in with their friends to say hey that really brings a smile to their face.”

“By keeping parents in the loop, getting some help there,” Guerrette adds. “Parents accessing us as well and asking questions. It’s a team effort and we’re all on the same team. We all want what’s best for our students or our kids if we are a parent and that’s kind of the mindset that I take with it.”

All three teachers say they are hopeful to return to in person learning when it is safe to do so.

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