Is Teaching Your New "Normal?"
Updated: Feb 8
COVID-19 has turned your family’s world upside down. Your children are home 24/7; you may be out of work; everybody’s on each others’ last nerve during the quarantine.
To make matters worse, the governor announced schools wouldn’t open in the fall. Distance learning or homeschooling are your only options. Now what?
You hide in the bathroom, scream stressful words into a towel, take a deep breath, and look at yourself in the mirror. “What on Earth am I going to do? I am not a teacher.”
Your resentfulness turns into the blame game. “My parents never taught me how to deal with a pandemic. How am I supposed to manage this?”
Well, were they alive during the Spanish Flu in 1918–1920? If not, the chances of your parents knowing how to survive a global pandemic are slim.
You ask yourself, How can I teach my children reading, writing, and math if I haven’t attended school in years? I didn’t sign up for this.
It’s not part of your DNA, right? You barely had enough patience to get through high school, college, or trade school. And earning an emergency teaching credential has not been part of the plan — right?
You consider how hard you worked until the pandemic caused a temporary lockdown on your life. Your new “normal” is anything but ordinary.
Ironically, you crave the busy routine that may have been a source of frustration in the past. But it was comfortable.
You consider the monotony of your former schedule, including:
commuting to work
working crazy hours
meeting time deadlines
helping kids with homework
driving around town for sports
You fell into bed exhausted every night.
Controlling your daily patterns — albeit stressful — was the norm. Strangely, you missed feeling overwhelmed.
To circumvent the busyness of your day, you may have set your alarm an hour earlier than usual. You wanted to strengthen your body, meditate, read, or wait in line at Starbucks for a shot of caffeine.
It was the glory hour. You snuck out at sunrise while your family slept. And you redirected your attention to an electronic device for social media updates. Life was grand — until everything changed.
The psychological impact of being in seclusion developed into claustrophobia. You yearned for space, alone time, and escape from the new normal.
Now, you miss the daily stresses that used to push you over the edge. Four months of isolation with your family makes you anxious about the future, yet you toe the line and smile a lot.
You try to feed your brain only positive news.
Your children need a well-balanced education with the support of their school district. But a global pandemic is causing anxiety among teachers, parents, and students.
Stress has yet to make the transition easy; the thrashing elephant in the room will be around for a while. But you’re willing to do whatever it takes. (inhale, exhale)
Three questions have been swirling inside your head:
Am I qualified to teach my children?
Will distance learning be effective?
Should I get a personal tutor for my children?
Yes, yes, and yes.