The New Normal?

Jen Robinson Uncategorized

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It’s hard to wrap my brain around exactly what is going on these days. I am sure many of you who are reading this blog are experiencing similar feelings. Yes, we are all watching the news and being flexible and patient as we learn new information. This information is fluid and changing by the day, making it hard to feel one way or another. 

I’ve been reading more and listening to podcasts to occupy my mind while I work from home. What I realized over the past few weeks is there were so many educators that were so stressed and burnt out that they felt guilty to actually have a moment to pause. A moment to reset from grading and teaching, from report cards and assessments, from accommodating scholar needs and reteaching content, from meeting with parents and planning for conferences. Many of the teachers and educators I spoke to were exhausted.

Some of our schools are still on spring break and thinking, planning what the next several weeks will look like when we do not return to school, but begin distance learning. How will we connect with our scholars? How will we know they are okay? What will learning look like? How will we meet the needs of ALL of our scholars? Will we return to school? Who is “essential” and who is “non essential” during this school closure time frame?

Each day we learn new facts and are left to navigate an uncharted course. Today, I learned what distance learning looks like on paper for principals, teachers and families. Our school will provide our scholars with hardcopy materials that will be available for curbside pickup.  Teachers will provide additional lessons and resources by utilizing virtual platforms. I have so many questions. Will all of our scholars be able to pick up materials? Will these materials be graded? What will it look like for our ESS scholars? 

What does distance learning look like for you? What challenges and celebrations are you experiencing?



Jen Robinson

Maricopa, Arizona

Hello, my name is Jen Robinson. I have been in education for over 20 years. I began teaching in Buffalo, NY in 1992, as a pre-school special education teacher. My experience ranges from primary grades through high school. My husband and I moved to Arizona in 2001, where we were fortunate enough to teach at the same school. In 2004, I achieved National Board Certification and currently support candidates. In 2011 I completed my Ed.D. in Leadership and Innovation. My dissertation research focused on supporting National Board candidates through their certification process. During the 2012-2013 school year, I completed my National Board renewal process. It was humbling and very powerful to step back into a classroom. I am currently an elementary principal. I am excited and hopeful for the new school year. I also serve on the Arizona Teacher Solutions Team where we are solutions focused in an effort to transform and elevate the teaching profession.

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Comments 1

  1. Caitlin Corrigan

    I related to your post a lot! I, too, am one of the teachers who feel guilty for slowing down and pausing during this unpredictable time. I feel like I just wanted a week off (Spring Break) and then to return to school and see my students again! It is so hard to feel like I’m doing enough for my students. Is posting 3 assignments in Google Classroom a day too much? Not enough? Or, should I encourage my students to use programs like Zearn and Espark to keep them moving forward?

    I try to remind myself to zoom out and look at the bigger picture. I can see that we will all be okay with this extended pause, and that it is needed right now. So, until we hit play again, I’ll be posting assignments in Google Classroom and FlipGrid and hoping to see my students in person again soon.

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