Exercising, creating artwork, and playing instruments can be the highlight of the day for many students. PE, Art, and Music give students the chance to explore what they enjoy and express who they are.
“I think Specials, whether we’re in person or online, has always been really important for kids,” said Tim Posey, Kohl Elementary Art Teacher. “Especially for kids who may struggle in other areas academically, socially, emotionally. Art, Music, and PE, is really a time for them to express who they are a little bit more, to show their interests, to explore what they are interested in, and what they like.”
Keeping students active and engaged, and making sure they are having fun during the pandemic has involved a lot of adjustments for Specials Teachers. When in-person, this may involve creating activities that can be done with more physical distance, or for example in Music, using instruments that are safer to play around each other under Covid guidelines.
“This is a new game,” said Diana Sorbo, Emerald Elementary Music Teacher. “We’re flexing, teaching in-person in our room and then in the hallway outside of the classroom, then we’re online. Everything has been reinvented.”
“These classes are very active and hands on usually,” said Aubrey Yeah, BVSD Coordinator of Language Arts & Humanities. “We have students running around, playing, making things, singing. Some of that is a little harder in this era of Covid teaching. But it’s also been amazing to see the creativity and how sometimes we’re able to focus on the standards that don’t always get quite as much attention.”
With a lot of hard work and creativity, Specials Teachers have done their best to keep students connected and engaged, while providing them with the lifelong benefits of trying new things.
“When kids are online or remote learning, it’s so important for them to participate in Specials,” said Maria Mischke, Kohl Elementary Physical Education Teacher. “When they are in school, some of their favorite classes are Specials and they can show us things they might not show in the classroom. Connecting with them online is really, really important.”
Whether it’s online or in-person, Specials Teachers are making it work everyday. They are engaging with their students regularly and contributing to their creative thinking, their imagination, their emotional and physical well-being, and most of all being a light of positivity during these challenging times.