School may not be in session at the moment but that hasn’t stopped the teachers and other educational professionals within the Perry Community School District. Educators across all grade levels have been doing what they can to continue to provide education into the lives of their students.
One such act came from a group of Perry Elementary staff who handed out various materials and resources for students and their families to work on while the school year is on pause. Beginning at 12:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 24, a group of 14 elementary teachers and staff handed out resources that touched nearly every subject across seven grade levels. It was a way for kids to still stay involved with education from home.
“We still want to have a positive impact on these students even if we can’t physically be in a classroom with them,” said Perry Elementary Principal Ned Menke. “We wanted to figure out a way to get resources out to the community for the next 15 school days and our teachers have been fantastic with that. We know it’s a challenge for some families out there to become teachers on a drop of a hat so anything we can provide will help.”
From books to worksheets and more, what was handed out to the students had a firm purpose and was carefully constructed as Instructional Coach Nathan Horgen mentioned.
“It was an idea of what would families find useful at home, not necessarily everything you’ll do in a lesson,” began Horgen. “It’s more trying to find some resources and things to help families learn and have engaging things to utilize.”
Perry Elementary as a whole pulled out all the stops including where they obtained their materials. Among the packets and papers were as many books as one could imagine. Those books were obtained in a variety of ways, all in an effort to help improve the lives of students while school is not in session.
“We have a lot of great materials for our students to utilize during this time,” Menke said. “We have some books that have been purchased through Title-1 over the years. We also had some used books from the library so we have a good mix of used and new books to help the students.”
He also liked seeing the amount of families taking advantage of the resources.
“I saw the work the teachers put into finding things and preparing all of this,” Menke said. “Hopefully families have been able to connect with their teachers so that we can go ahead and provide as much support as we can through this unique time in education.”
Of course it’s not just the elementary school that has ramped up efforts to help their students. On Monday, March 23 students were allowed to pick up their computers so that online resources could be made available to them through the school.
“One of the biggest impacts had on these students is to their routines,” said Skylar Wolf, seventh grade science teacher. “For over half of the school year these kids have had a routine of going to school, to classes, and receiving instructional time with their teachers. Right now we can’t connect with them in the classroom but by utilizing resources like Google classrooms and such we can bring some resemblance of normalcy back into their lives.”
It may not be what students are used to, but it’s something that is important for all teachers across the PCSD to continually provide.
“It’s very important that we as teachers provide our students with anything we can to help them grow academically,” said Perry High School Special Education Teacher Trista Cohea. “Utilizing online resources is very important during this time.”
For anybody who hasn’t been able to pick up resources for their child, the district says to contact the PCSD at 515-465-4656 or touch base through their individual teachers or simply on their website, www.perry.k12.ia.us.