SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Navigating through the virtual world is the new normal for educators across the area who are working to teach their students during the coronavirus crisis.
Brittany Kissinger is a kindergarten teacher in Elk Grove who is now navigating teaching virtually. She's also finding ways to keep students engaged while she teaches online.
"How can I use what we usually do but put it behind a screen?" Kissinger said. "Let's try to pretend like we are sitting on the carpet at school, so find a place in your house where you can sit just like we sit at school."
She created a list of what students need to know before moving on to the next grade level. They are skills like learning the alphabet, sounds and certain words. She also makes sure her teaching follows the curriculum that's been given to her from her district.
But even she admits, it's not an easy task.
"Something that we are trying to solve is how can we make it feel more normal with what is going on right now," Kissinger said.
The new normal is a big reason why Modesto group Love Our Cities is working with its office of education to recruit educators out of retirement for virtual tutoring.
"The specific need right now is helping with distance learning, and so we are stepping into that gap," said Executive Director Jeff Pishney with Love Our Cities. "Whatever your expertise is. Maybe it is 5th-grade math, we have a lot of parents who need help with their 5th-grade math students."
More than 50 people have already stepped up to the challenge of tackling virtual teaching head-on.
Miss Kissinger is confident students will learn and maintain the skills they need to grow even if it is online.
She's been asking herself: "What do the kids really like to do with me at school? How can I make it look like they are doing it with me?
If you would like to help with virtual tutoring, visit https://www.loveourcities.org/
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