Well, sheesh. I guess, according to our governor, this is going to go on for a while. So this will be a long post as I set up some agendas/ideas for the next few weeks for us. You may want to ask your parents to read this one too if they aren't already reading these.
I will post something for you to do every day. However, nothing I post here will be required, mandatory, or graded. Our district is very adamant that we can not require classwork or instruction when all students will not have equal access to the resources. If what I am posting is not keeping you busy enough, then email me and I will try to give you more to do or think about. If you are having difficulty with any of the tasks I am suggesting, then just email me and I can help you independently. Anything you are doing at this point will keep you on track and engaged. We're going to get through this with flying colors! On a side note, I will not post things during our originally scheduled spring break, but if you want some things to work on, email me and I will make sure you stay engaged. If you haven't been following every day, you can go back and work on some of the tasks I posted last week. And by the way, thank you all for your emails and your parents' emails too. It really does make my day.
Okay, so yesterday and today, after I heard the governor's announcement, I started thinking about how I could help you and your parents during "homeschooling." I decided to draw on my short experience of homeschooling from many years ago. When my daughters were in 2nd grade and 7th grade, we moved to Ireland for several months. My husband, who is a college professor, was asked to start a program in a small city on the coast of Ireland with about 30 students from the university he was teaching at in Pennsylvania. Our oldest daughter, who is still the more adventurous, was so excited to go to school in Ireland. She couldn't wait, and we enrolled her in an all-girls' school that she could walk to from the house we would be renting. She would have classes in Irish (we might call the native language of Ireland "Gaelic" but the Irish prefer we use the term "Irish" to describe their native tongue) and she was so excited.
Our youngest daughter was terrified of going to a strange school where they might sometime expect her to speak a strange language. So we decided that I would homeschool Amy. You might think I would find it easy, but in fact, I hated it. Amy is a very active kid and she did not want to sit still in her own house and focus on things that she wasn't interested in. She wanted to be outside, she wanted to go to the pool (we had access to an indoor pool), she wanted to watch television, and she wanted kids her own age to talk to. It was a little bit of a disaster, and I didn't do it well. My girls still laugh about math class which consisted of me putting sticky notes with numbers on them around our kitchen and shouting out math facts while Amy ran around hitting the sticky note with the answer on it. Reading class consisted of me reading my book while Amy read hers. In short, not a great deal of active learning went on, but Amy and I both remember our days together very fondly. I eventually stopped worrying about schooling her and just tried to give her some cool experiences. We saw a lot of the Irish countryside and made a daily trip to the fishmonger who quickly became her best friend. Luckily, we both survived it, returned to the U.S. and our lives as teacher and student --separately-- and life went on.
What I learned from that experience was that I needed some more structure than I had from our school district --I felt lost trying to figure out what to do for a 2nd grader. Lucky for you, the Rutherford County school district has posted some resources for you and your parents on the district website and I think, has emailed links to the email registered to your household. My plan will be to direct you each day to something on one of those sites that you can accomplish in a regular class period and perhaps some extended activity that you can always work on when you have time. None of this is mandatory, but it should help you and your parents feel like you are progressing or reviewing during this time and not simply being idle. Please let me know if it is not working for you at any time.
Ok--so I have posted some links below to a couple of worksheets on verb tense. I am grading your writing assessments (slowly) and have discovered that we could all use a little review here. So read the directions at the top of each page and follow the examples. If you don't want to print them, just read them on your screen and write the answers on paper. I will post the answers tomorrow.
And while you're at it, why don't you write a journal entry about how you felt when you learned we would be closed until the end of April? Are you enjoying your time at home so much that you were excited? Were you a little happy (or a lot)? Did you decide to make a new plan (like I did)? Are you nervous that you may miss some things you were looking forward to? (A dance recital or concert?) Are you keeping in touch with your friends? (btw --you can follow my teacher account on Twitter @FrancesFederic2 --it's all teacher/educational stuff, but there is some fun stuff too. You should follow the National Cowboy Museum right now. Their posts are hilarious.)
Hang in there. Get outside today...but not too close to anyone else. If we follow the guidelines, we should be able to end this thing more quickly. I know it's hard...(try to write about what you find most difficult).
I will see you soon!