Changing Curriculum for COVID Times

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Isabella Weiner

Geometry teacher Susan Welch has had to adjust her curriculum to meet the demand of teaching both in the classroom and virtually.

Milda Romanello, Staff Reporter

COVID-19 has had a drastic effect on the world, our country and more specifically, schools. Earlier this year when the pandemic first broke out, schools around the world were on mandatory lockdowns. As a result of this, students were learning from home and teachers were teaching from home. This not only had an affect on the curriculum but also the acclimation to learning and teaching at home rather than in person. 

Coming into the new school year, although challenging, has been a change for everyone. Namely our educators. Jennifer Martin and Susan Welch, freshman biology and geometry teachers, made adjustments to their curriculum this year. 

“I changed the entire way I teach to accommodate the virtual students as well as the in class students,” said Martin. “I can’t do hands on labs when equipment is being shared because there’s not enough time to properly sanitize between uses. I don’t collect hard copies of papers. I have to post assignments to three different places every week to allow for reception and submission. I spend hours more time just planning for the same material that I have taught for years.”

Even though schools are now doing in person classes, there is also the option to stay home. For teachers this can create a very difficult environment in the classroom. Submission of paper assignments and hands-on activities can be challenging to convert for students not in the classroom.  And managing the in-person  students while trying to incorporate the virtual students into the classroom, can be stressful. 

“It was extremely difficult to navigate both online and in-person teaching, especially at the beginning,” said Welch. “However, over the summer Holy Trinity provided many opportunities to get teachers ready and to explore different options. They also upgraded the technology in my classroom, and that helped a lot. I feel like the change was difficult, but in many ways, it was a good thing. I definitely feel better prepared to face teaching in the 21st century.”

Keeping track of students working in and out of the classroom can be very demanding. Fortunately for teachers at Holy Trinity, they were given the opportunity to explore new ideas and options for teaching during these crazy times. Welch says that although difficult to navigate, it can be helpful to prepare students (and teachers) for a technology driven future ahead.