Kindergarten Success in Quarantine

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These Schoolcraft kindergarten students are pictured on the Zoom screen, ready for their morning lessons from their teacher, Jennifer Stull.

By Rob Peterson

Jennifer Stull, who teaches kindergarten in Schoolcraft, was surprised to learn how much her students can accomplish virtually.

“The kids all have iPads they took home and we use tech in the classroom, so they are already familiar with using the technology,” she said. “We are using the SeeSaw remote learning app, which is fabulous.”

The trouble is that teaching is about the whole child, she said, not just working on projects via an iPad. That is where a creative teacher comes in. “We need to be sure that we’re incorporating art, movement, and virtual social activities wherever possible” at this age.

As an example, her last assignment was based on a book she read via video to her students, called Carla Sandwich. “The book is about a girl who makes sandwiches out of creative combinations. They wrote to me what their silly sandwich would be and drew a picture of it. Then they could record themselves reading a sentence about their sandwich.”

Engaging the parents is essential as well, which is why she posts an overview the night before so they can help their kids schedule their learning time.

How will next year be different? “I’ll appreciate the kids even more,” she said, sharing that she misses them every day, so much that it hurts. “I hope to have a picnic with this year’s kids before next year begins.”

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