Teachers going above and beyond

John J. Kim / Chicago Tribune

Teachers Who Have Gone Above and Beyond During Coronavirus Quarantine

Teachers Who Have Gone Above and Beyond During Coronavirus Quarantine

Teachers to the rescue
Teachers going above and beyond

John J. Kim / Chicago Tribune

Teachers are tenacious. Nothing can thwart their mission to serve and care for each student. Not mandatory stay-at-home orders. Not social distancing. Not a global pandemic. As many teachers tough out the remainder of the school year under new remote learning conditions, their unwavering support for students and others has not gone unnoticed. Here are just some educators who have gone to extreme lengths to ensure students of all ages are safe, cared for and, above all else, educated.

One gym teacher brought his classes to students’ driveways

One gym teacher brought his classes to students’ driveways

Terrence Antonio James / Chicago Tribune

Joe Schallmoser, a gym teacher from Downers Grove Illinois, has been conducting traveling gym classes during his school’s mandatory closure. He visits up to 10 houses a day. As of April 22, he told the Chicago Tribune he is just a few visits shy of 150. He’s made stops in over 30 towns and over 35 zip codes, instructing students and colleagues alike on burpees and more.

As for art, one teacher posts daily crafts for kids

As for art, one teacher posts daily crafts for kids

Courtesy of Camille Donne

Get your art class fix with Ms. Donne, a mobile art teacher out of Hampton Roads, Virginia. According to the Daily Press, Camille Donne thought she would just post directions for various arts and crafts on her Facebook page for parents swamped at home. Soon she received requests for video tutorials too. She obliged and the rest is art history.

An orchestra teacher in Illinois makes house calls to fix students’ broken instruments

An orchestra teacher in Illinois makes house calls to fix students’ broken instruments

Jennifer Brown-James / HANDOUT

A creative outlet is one way for people young and old to manage coronavirus anxiety. So when students began reaching out to Jennifer Brown-James, a music teacher at a shuttered school in Illinois, about broken violin, cello and bass strings, she began making house calls. Brown-James told the Chicago Tribune that her 25 years of experience resetting strings helps to make the exchanges quick ones.

Like many others, this piano teacher continues classes online

Like many others, this piano teacher continues classes online

Courtesy Photo

Community college professor Helen Smith-Tarchalski works as president of a local music teachers association in Maryland. After schools closed in March, Smith-Tarchalski began assisting other teachers in moving their music programs online to video-conferencing platforms like Zoom and Skype. According to the Capital Gazette, Smith-Tarchalski has since moved her piano lessons online too.

So does this drum instructor

So does this drum instructor

Courtesy photo / HANDOUT

Like Smith-Tarchalski in Maryland, Connecticut drum instructor Chris Latournes and his students have not missed a beat. Latournes told the Hartford Courant that moving his drum lessons online comes with one advantage: students can no longer lean on him as a crutch. They must play their instrument on their own and practice must go on, even at a greater distance than ever before.

This teacher reads a daily bedtime story to her students

This teacher reads a daily bedtime story to her students

Photo courtesy of Voncile Campbell

In March, math teacher Voncile Campbell first took to her Detroit school’s Facebook page to read aloud a bedtime story to students feeling down. Ever since, viewers have anticipated her nightly return, commented on her daily videos and even sent in book requests. Her favorite story to read aloud so far has been “Honey, I Love” by Eloise Greenfield, a poetic story about how love can be found anywhere.

A computer science teacher moved 3D printers from closed school to her home to make face shields

A computer science teacher moved 3D printers from closed school to her home to make face shields

Photo courtesy of Kim Albright

Today’s technology allows for teachers to assist in stemming the spread of the virus in ways they couldn’t even just a decade ago. Computer science teacher Kim Albright from Northfield, Illinois, safely took home two 3D printers from her temporarily shuttered school classroom. Albright told the Pioneer Press she hopes to make upward of 75 to 100 plastic headbands for medical face shields a week at home, all while juggling online classes with fourth through eighth graders.

This school teacher brought home his 3D printers too

This school teacher brought home his 3D printers too

Photo courtesy of Rabbi Mordechai Smolarcik

Almost 1,400 miles away from Northfield in Boca Raton, Florida, Rabbi Mordechai Smolarcik brought home two 3D printers from the makerspace in his closed modern Orthodox Jewish day school too. Smolarcik told the Sun Sentinel he originally intended to print designs submitted by students. Soon, he received messages about medical face shield designs, including one from a classroom parent employed at the area children’s hospital.

One North Carolina teacher sent a birthday message to a student’s sibling

One North Carolina teacher sent a birthday message to a student’s sibling

Photo courtesy of Sara

Sara, a high school senior from North Carolina, celebrated her birthday at home in April. Much to her surprise, she received a sweet birthday wish from her sibling’s middle school English teacher. Although they all attend the same K-12 school, Sara and the teacher had met only once.

In Florida, a husband and wife teaching duo rally volunteers to provide meals

In Florida, a husband and wife teaching duo rally volunteers to provide meals

Courtesy of Army of Angels

Craig Russell and Kate Demory are a husband and wife duo who both teach at the same high school in Winter Park, Florida. Together, according to the Orlando Sentinel, the couple and their non-profit organization Army of Angels mobilized more than 100 volunteers to provide food, and more volunteers to deliver nearly 1,000 meals to families facing financial hardship.

In Connecticut, one educator juggles online teaching and shopping for those who can’t

In Connecticut, one educator juggles online teaching and shopping for those who can’t

Mark Mirko / Hartford Courant

Louis Goffinet, a 26-year-old middle school science teacher from Connecticut, has also taken on a dual role in the age of coronavirus. But multitasking isn’t new to Goffinet. Even during the regular school year, he juggles his teaching post and a position at the parks and recreation department. Goffinet told the Hartford Courant he now spends his time remote teaching and collecting groceries for over 30 families who cannot visit the grocery store themselves.

Some teachers have met students on the front porch

Some teachers have met students on the front porch

Photo courtesy of Josh Anderson

In a viral act of kindness, sixth-grade math teacher Chris Waba visited his student and neighbor Rylee Anderson to help her with the homework he assigned. He brought his whiteboard and dry-erase markers to her family’s front porch and answered Anderson’s questions through the shut screen door.

A Virginia teacher continued a class tradition online

A Virginia teacher continued a class tradition online

Kaitlin McKeown / The Virginian-Pilot

Every spring for over 30 years, Norfolk teacher Karen Lee has introduced each of her classes of 4- and 5-year-olds to a class of caterpillars. On the same day Lee introduced her students to this year’s caterpillars, their school announced a temporary closure. So, Lee took the caterpillars home. Since the closure, Lee told the Virginian-Pilot she has been recording the caterpillars’ metamorphosis and has shared the tradition with her students virtually.

Staff at a St. Louis school celebrated prom in a parking lot

Staff at a St. Louis school celebrated prom in a parking lot

Photo courtesy of Cor Jesu Academy

Even after prom at Cor Jesu Academy in St. Louis was canceled, dedicated faculty and staff members made sure the night was one their seniors would never forget. The school lit up for the first time in weeks while faculty and staff lined the streets cheering on seniors driving past. It rained the entire hour of the celebration, but neither faculty, staff nor students cared.

Teachers and staff in Maryland held a car parade

Teachers and staff in Maryland held a car parade

Photo courtesy of St. Mary’s Elementary School

In March, St. Mary’s Elementary school staff in Maryland readied the minivans for a two-hour-long teacher car parade. They all met up at the library, then cruised through four nearby neighborhoods. According to the Capital Gazette, 40 cars participated in the parade.

A school in Chicago held a car parade too

A school in Chicago held a car parade too

John J. Kim / Chicago Tribune

A week after the St. Mary’s Elementary school parade, teachers and other staff at John Dore Elementary School put on a similar display of support and unity during the coronavirus outbreak. The school’s assistant principal, Christina Sanchez, told the Chicago Tribune that the parade was meant to supply just as much hope for parents as students.

One parade even featured a visit from Mickey Mouse himself

One parade even featured a visit from Mickey Mouse himself

Erin Hooley / Chicago Tribune

Finally, as another Illinois school rallied around a car parade, a local organization provided a few non-school staff members to join in on the parade fun. Teachers were accompanied by Mickey and Minnie Mouse, and Lilo and Stitch. According to the Chicago Tribune, the staff decorated their cars with signs and paint offering onlooking children a respite from all the indoor activities they have been using to pass the time

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