Pandemic Journal – Introduction

With online learning starting back up for my school community, a lot has changed in the education I providing to my students and a lot has stayed the same.

My students know that I value writing in all sorts of different forms – reflections, analysis paragraphs, reviews, graphic organizers, etc. I believe that students should be always be writing in order to improve their skill set.

I have enjoyed collaborating with my English department colleagues. One of the pieces to emerge from the Zoom planning meetings was the Pandemic Journal. The Pandemic Journal has students consider a variety of themes associated with the pandemic we all find ourselves living through day after day. Each prompt is accompanied with a short article or reading, as well.

The purpose of this introduction is to share the collaborative idea of the Pandemic Journal, its prompts and readings, along with my writing about the times we’re living in with COVID-19.

To get students to start thinking about how their time has been spent during quarantine in Michigan, we invited students to read a New York Times article titled “I Can’t Believe I’m Going to Say This, But I Would Rather Be At School.” The article’s introduction is written by an eleven year old boy and the rest of the article is a collection of students’ thoughts about their time at home. The students’ ages range from six to eighteen.

After reading, we had students list their favorite and least favorite activities they have been doing since being at home. Below you will find mine:

Favorite Activities:

  • Daily walks in the neighborhood with my wife and dogs
  • Watch TV and Netflix shows. Anyone else watch Tiger King?!
  • Read books. Check out my COVID-19 Stack!
  • Exercise more often. That half marathon isn’t going to run itself.
  • Sleep … zzz

Least Favorite Activities:

  • Working from home. I miss going to school, seeing friends and colleagues, and teaching in my classroom with my students.
  • Staying at home. I miss traveling and seeing family and friends.
  • Watching it snow. Where are the warmer temps?!

I’m looking forward to writing along with my students in our Pandemic Journals! Check out the other entries:

  • Introduction (this post)
  • Week 1
  • Week 2
  • Week 3
  • Week 4
  • Week 5
  • Week 6
  • Week 7

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