Our schools were thrown a curveball in March of 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic hit. For our family, an extended spring break of classes turned into a learning from home model. The schools didn't really have a solid plan in place, and you can't blame them for it either. All of us were trying to figure out our lives and adjusting to life in a pandemic.

A typical school day in the spring was a couple articles to read for my son. My daughter had a couple of educational apps she would play. We would do some lesson plans together and that's how we rounded out the year.

This fall we tried the hybrid learning model. It went better than I had expected, until cases started to surge in late October around here. Our school district switched to distance learning and I thought it was going to be just like it was in the spring. I was pleasantly surprised that it isn't the same.

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Both kids now have tablets or laptops that were issued from the school. My daughter has apps that have classroom activities now that she does at home and submits to here teacher. Both kids have regular zoom classes with other students. This may not seem like a huge deal to some people, but for us parents working from home this has been a lifesaver. The teacher can teach over zoom, and we can go on with our work. It's much better this time around.

The struggle in the spring with at home learning for us had to do more with teaching, and getting our own jobs done as working parents. This time around in the fall I'm finding that I just need to keep the kids on task and make sure they make their zoom calls. I'm fortunate enough that I have a schedule that allows me to be home with the kids for the majority of the day.

We're also fortunate to have good teachers. Most of us have had to adapt to a different way of life and schedule during the pandemic. Teachers have had to do a lot of adjusting, and faced an uncertain school year. In our school district (Superior) they have done a good job preparing and planning for this at home model this time around. They deserve some recognition for being the essential workers that they are.

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